Digital Literary Studies in Uncertain Times

Confronting the ‘Global’, Exploring the ‘Local’: Digital Apprehensions of Poetics and Indian Literature(s)
21-22 December 2020, New Delhi

Digital Literary Studies in Uncertain Times: Digital Humanities and Literary Studies shared early synergistic interests in digital storytelling, digital archiving, and computational methods for literary research. In many regards, DH offered the democratizing potential of open access publishing, sharing texts and archives with broader and new audiences, and destabilizing canonical formations. Although these promises have been hindered by structural issues like funding and the hegemonic entrenchment of the Euro-American canon, I revisit these affordances of digital humanities methods and platforms in our present moment. Situating myself in the diasporic and trans/national contexts of India and the United States, I make a case for postcolonial and anti-caste praxis to ground our work in digital literary studies. This includes taking up the broader question of how DH practitioners can respond to socio-political emergencies in their local and national communities. Against the backdrop of a pandemic unfolding amidst state and systemic violence, DH scholars and teachers can enact radical and transformative practices and pedagogies at the intersection of digital humanities and literary studies.

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