Attending to complexity; or, how do I say anything about Twitter?

By K.G. Smith

(This is part 1, read part 2 here)

When Moya Bailey visited our class I asked a question about her emerging research using Twitter data. I asked about her object of inquiry, and she gave me a thoughtful response about a kind of shifting lens–between analyzing the network as such and more traditional ethnographic methods like interviews. I’d like to tease out a few points here about where my question was coming from, and some follow up thoughts that pertain to my own research.

My interest in this question of the object of inquiry was partly due to having attended Katherine Bode’s talk titled “Digital Humanities & Digitized Newspapers: The Australian Story” (you can view the slides and read the transcript here). After a brief overview of the DH scene in Australia, Bode proceeded to talk a bit about her project. The real contribution, I thought, were the four epistemological principles she described for those doing digital archival research.

  1. Literary works are processes, not singular objects, in time and space
  2. The archive contains multiple systems of meaning
  3. Digital methods for accessing the archive increase the potential for unrealized mismatches between the access we intend and the access we achieve
  4. All data must be published

Bode …read more

Read more at : Kevin G. Smith