Writings:An enquiry into the uses and abuses of digital history

Past Conference: RSA 2023 San Juan

Last week, we attended the Renaissance Society of America Conference with a EURONEWS panel. This year, the conference was held in San Juan, Porto Rico, which certainly required an update of my wardrobe of conference gear compared to last year Dublin’s-based edition.

Follow the link for more information: https://rsa.confex.com/rsa/2023/meetingapp.cgi/Session/6504

There were many interesting DH panels among which the open meeting of the Digital and Electronic Media community. As you can see above, I have also been spotted here in my new beige blazer, with my supervisor Prof. Dooley right next to me.

The EURONEWS panel itself was on the morning of the conference’s last day. For those interested, I have reproduced my abstract in full here below:

The separation of the news genre from that of history in the sixteenth century brought a new awareness of time. The manuscript newsletters that arrived with weekly intervals, bearing news from different places, gave the present a more distinctive character. Already in early modern times, there was understood to be a relation between the genres of history and news. In the historiography, historical awareness is not understood to be perennial, but only to have come into existence around the sixteenth century, roughly around the same time that the manuscript newsletter was introduced. The development of this historical awareness is generally considered to go hand in hand with a shift from a worldview based on ‘universal’ Christian values to one based on particular moments in time. This paper will explore this tension between universals and particulars with relation to the sixteenth-century manuscript newsletter (also called avviso). Attention will be paid to, among other aspects, the republic of Genoa, which received ample attention in the news during the civil war of 1575-76. The Republic’s citizens are during this time represented in the news as being divided between two particular constitutional moments in the city’s history, namely the years 1528 and 1547.

New Article: Temporal Philology

It is with great excitment, that I can announce that a paper from my hand has been published in the DH journal Magazén. The complete title follows: “Reconstructing Patterns of Avvisi Creation and Distribution With Travel Times”. The aim has been to develop a method to systematically study the speed with which the news travelled over the European continent (and beyond). The scope of the article is further explained in the abstract:

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Past Event: Research Showcase

On 21 June, I was back in Cork to present at UCC’s Research Showcase on behalf of the EURONEWS project. Here, I discussed the general outline of the project endeavors to create a new workflow for the study of manuscript newsletters. At the same time, it was a good moment to receive an update about the other research projects active at UCC. A short impression of the day can be found hereunder.

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Past event: Opening Virtual Exhibition

The following is from a few months back, but we had not shared the recording at this venue yet. The EURONEWS project has been working for a while on the news of what is perhaps the most stupefying siege from the early-modern period. The Siege of Ostend was so unusual because it lasted for no less than three years. Therefore, the EURONEWS project has worked for a long time to collect several reports coming from this event. This has led to a digital exhibition for which I have also written several contributions, and which can be visited here.

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Past Workshop: The Making and Unmaking of Identities

The last two days, I have participated in the workshop ‘The Making and Unmaking of Identities in the Early Modern Mediterranean’. A full grasp of the cultural and political dynamics within the Mediterranean are fundamental in order to better understand the manuscript newsletters from here. This region also takes a pivotal place within the news network in general. The workshop has proved to be most useful in this respect and I hope to be able to integrate these new insights into my dissertation.

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Upcoming Conference: RSA

Tomorrow, the conference of the Renaissance Society America will commmence. This year the RSA will take place in Dublin. Naturally, the EURONEWS project cannot be absent from this venue. Therefore, I will present on the second day of the conference, Thursday 31 March. Together with my supervisor Prof. Brendan Dooley and with Dr. Davide Boerio, postdoc in our project, I will form a panel that will start at 09:00 in a room at the main venue, the Convention Center Dublin. Details can be found here.

My wish is use this opportunity to disclose some of my digital strategies in studying manuscript newsletters. This can of course also be understood from the abstract of my paper which follows:

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Upcoming Conference: Free Speech

Next week, I will be participating in the conference Religion and Free Speech in the Early Modern Period on Thursday 25th and Friday 26th of November. Originally, it was planned to be held in person in Amsterdam, but due to recent developments the event is scheduled to take place online on zoom.

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Upcoming Conference: Questioning Republicanism

This week, I am participating in the conference ‘Questioning Republicanism in Early Modern Genoa.’ Originally, this event was planned to be held in Genoa but because of the covid crisis it was, unfortunately, moved to the digital realm. On the bright side, the advantage of this is that it will be much easier for everyone to watch the papers.

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