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Ecological Media Studies and the Matter of Digital Technologies

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  23 October 2020


In 2009 william pannapacker pronounced the digital humanities to be “the first ‘next big thing’ in a longtime” promising to reconfigure and reinvigorate the humanities. The same could now plausibly be said about the environmental humanities with the recent rise of dedicated academic centers (at, e.g., KTH Royal Institute of Technology, in Sweden; Princeton University; the University of California, Santa Barbara; and the University of Utah), grant-funded projects (like the Sawyer Seminar on the Environmental Humanities at the University of California, Los Angeles, and the consortium Humanities for the Environment), and faculty positions. If the digital and environmental humanities have been ascendant amid what Christopher Newfield describes as the “unmaking” of public higher education and what Richard Grusin terms the “crisis humanities,” such an assessment invites the question of whether the ecological digital humanities (EcoDH) might serve to combine the most saleable facets of the digital humanities and the environmental humanities for university stakeholders who promote applied humanities work outside academia or, alternatively, a hybrid method for researching, teaching, and designing cultural responses to structures of ecological and social precarity (Grusin 80).

The Changing Profession
Copyright © Modern Language Association of America, 2016

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