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Digital Transformations: The  Humanities in Challenging Times 

Time Tuesday 16 November until Wednesday 17 November, 2021 at 08:30 - 17:00
Place Online

We live in times of changes on different levels – environmental, social, political, educational, etc. The Covid-19 pandemic, for example, fueled a great deal of digital re-location as it undeniably changed how we think about and perform our work, education, and personal relations, as well as how it has affected the world on a political and economic scale. Other ongoing crises of global and local impact, some radical and others more discreet, make us hope for a time “after”. But what is left to go back to – and more importantly – what do we wish to return to? How will academia face these challenges and explore the new opportunities we now have?


This conference marks and celebrates the 20th anniversary of Humlab. Over the last two decades some major transformations within academia and society as whole can be related to the dispersion and growing importance of digital technology.

Over the years, our interdisciplinary lab with its diverse technical environments has been part of the digital breakthrough within the humanities, and a part of the establishment of the field of digital humanities. Our many researchers have also contributed to the knowledge about the increasing digitalization in society and academic work.
During the conference we will continue to examine the different and changing roles of digital research, digital media, and technology in challenging times – what are the current, and future, challenges, and opportunities?

The conference will address and give examples of how humanities scholars – engaged in digital aspects of culture and society – are involved in large- and small-scale transformations here and now, and for the future to come. In a range of themed sessions, addressing topics such as artificial intelligence, environmental and social sustainability, reasons to believe, higher education, visual cultures, and academic intersections and computational text analysis, invited scholars will reflect on current issues of digital transformations, challenges and changes.

Keynote speakers

CRYSTAL ABIDIN, Associate Professor, Curtin University.
‘TikTok, Internet Celebrity, and Small Business Cultures’
(This keynote is presented in collaboration with DIGSUM).

JENNIFER GABRYS, Professor of Media, Culture and Environment at Department of Sociology, University of Cambridge.
‘Smart Forests and the Vegetalization of Digital Technologies’

ROOPIKA RISAM, Chair of Secondary and Higher Education and Associate Professor of Education and English, Salem State University.
‘Envisioning a Postcolonial Digital Humanities in Theory and Praxis’

JOHN DURHAM PETERS, Maria Rosa Menocal Professor of English and of Film and Media Studies, Yale University.
‘Threats to the humanities in a digital moment’

Program and Registration

Organizer: Humlab
Event type: Conference
Evelina Liliequist
Read about Evelina Liliequist