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Talks/Essays About Transcriptions

Transcriptions faculty and graduate students often present research in talks, conferences, and publications that in whole or part showcase the Transcriptions Project. Recent talks featuring Transcriptions include Alan Liu's presentations at the National Endowment for the Humanities, Vanderbilt University, and the 2001 ACH-ALLC conference at NYU. Some talks are supported by online notes, outlines, audio versions, or full-text versions.


Featured Talks

Humanities in the Information Age: Lessons for the Cool
The Lawrence Willson Memorial Lecture, California Lambda of Phi Beta Kappa Initiation, UCSB, June 1, 2002

by: Alan Liu

[excerpt:] Why is it important for general society that the humanities to engage with information technology? The speculative answer, upon which I would like to conclude, is this: by itself, "cool" is not enough to deal with the contemporary life of knowledge work so as to make of it a fully humane life (i.e., what the ancient philosophers called the "good life" not just in the material but in ethical senses of the word "good"). The humanities surely do not have all of the answers; but they can contribute one part of the answer to the question of what is the "good life" in the age of knowledge work. That answer is that "cool"–which by itself can be a shallow, narrow, even cruel (as in the common high-school judgement that "either you're cool, or you suck")–needs the complement of a historical view of the technological life in order to be more humane.

            That, I speculate, must be the larger answer to the question: why should the humanities engage with technology?

(Full text of talk)

After 9/11: Wiring Networks for Security and Liberty
Consortium of Humanities Chairs, U. Minnesota, Dec. 2001

by: William Warner

[excerpt:] The events of 9/11 have dealt a powerful shock to this project. It is forcing us to ask difficult new questions about the utility and dangers of intelligent networks and the global communication of information. My talk this morning will seek to do three things: first, understand how the attacks on 9/11, and the subsequent anthrax attacks, have succeeded in compromising our networks; second, suggest how early American communication networks played a central role in winning American independence from the British Imperial system. Finally, I will end this talk by arguing that 9/11 should not mean that we reconfigure American networks by bartering away our liberty in the name of security. Instead, in the wake of 9/11, we should think through ways to make our networks more secure by making them more robust, more extensive, and more intelligent.

(Full text of talk)

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Recent Talk/Essays

* The Object as Code Technoptopias conference, Univ. of Strathclyde, Glasgow, July 2002, and trAce Writing Conference, Nottingham Univ., July 2002
Rita Raley

* Presentation of Alan Liu's book on The Laws of Cool: The Culture of Information at the UCSB Center for Information Technology & Society, Nov. 2, 2001
Alan Liu

* "Making the Internet a Matrix for the Humanities: Projects and Issues" U. Alberta, May 17, 2002
William Warner

* Presentation at Digital Cultures Project Summer Institute, June 22, 2001
Robert Adlington, Jeremy Douglass, Alan Liu

* The Tribe of Cool: Information Culture and History, Realvideo Webcast of keynote address at ACH-ALLC conference, NYU, June 16, 2001
Alan Liu

* Historicizing Information, eHumanities series at the NEH, Washington, D.C., May 1, 2001
Alan Liu



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