In defense of sandcastles : research thinking through visualization in digital humanities
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Although recent research acknowledges the potential of visualization methods in digital humanities (DH), the predominant terminology used to describe visualizations (prototypes and tools) focuses on their use as a means to an end and, more importantly, as an instrument in the service of humanities research. We introduce the sandcastle as a metaphorical lens and provocative term to highlight visualization as a research process in its own right. We argue that building visualization sandcastles provides a holistic approach to cross-disciplinary knowledge generation that embraces visualization as (1) an aesthetic provocation to elicit critical insights, interpretation, speculation, and discussions within and beyond scholarly audiences, (2) a dynamic process wherein speculation and re-interpretation advance knowledge within all disciplines involved, and (3) a mediator of ideas and theories within and across disciplines. Our argument is grounded in critical theory, DH, design, human–computer interaction, and visualization, and based on our own research on an exceptional literary collection. We argue that considering visualizations as sandcastles foregrounds valuable insights into the roles of visualization as a mindset, methodology, and praxis within humanities research and beyond.
Hinrichs , U , Forlini , S & Moynihan , B 2018 , ' In defense of sandcastles : research thinking through visualization in digital humanities ' , Digital Scholarship in the Humanities (DSH) , vol. Advance Articles , fqy051 . https://doi.org/10.1093/llc/fqy051
Digital Scholarship in the Humanities (DSH)
© 2018, the Author(s). Published by Oxford University Press on behalf of EADH. This work has been made available online in accordance with the publisher's policies. This is the author created accepted version manuscript following peer review and as such may differ slightly from the final published version. The final published version of this work is available at https://doi.org/10.1093/llc/fqy051
DescriptionThis work was supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC), grant number 430-2013-692.
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