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The Transatlantic Enlightenment

This seminar aims to bring together faculty and graduate students to discuss new developments and potential areas for collaboration around the idea of "the spatial turn" in historical studies. Aided by the rise of digital humanities programs, institutional projects, and forms of accessible digital storytelling, there has been a growing interest in the "spatial turn" in history, transforming how we understand regions from the American West to the spaces of modern England. Yet such success raises important research questions. What are the limitations of technology for the spatial turn? What is the significance of the spatial turn for histories of parts of the world (such as East Asia) that have their own historical and geographical traditions that long predate the arrival of Western spatial conceptions?


Spring 2021

All Meetings will be held via Zoom.

  • Thursday, March 11, 2021
    4:30-5:45 pm
    Online Zoom session with Dr. Clio Andris, Georgia Tech
    “Spatial Social Network Analysis of the American Mafia”

  • Thursday, April 15, 2021
    6:00 pm
    Dr. Yijiang Zhong (Tokyo University) will give a lecture on ura Nihon 裏日本 (the backside of Japan) 
    Zoom link
    Password: 2fQf6e (if prompted)

Fall 2020

  • Friday, October 23, 2020
    2-3:30 pm
    Online Zoom session with Dr. David Ambaras and Dr. Kate McDonald
    “The Accidental Digital Humanists: Building the Bodies and Structures Project”

    David Ambaras is Professor of History at North Carolina State University. Kate McDonald is Associate Professor of History at UC Santa Barbara. David and Kate head Bodies and Structures, a multi-year digital project that brings together scholars of early modern and modern Japan, East Asia, and Southeast Asia to interrogate the spatial history of East Asia from the seventeenth to the twenty-first centuries. Bodies and Structures was awarded an NEH Digital Humanities Advancement Grant in 2019 to build out Bodies and Structures 2.0 and develop new analytical tools for Scalar. For more information on the project, read overview essay:

Spring 2020

  • Friday, February 14, 2020, 2:30-4:00 P.M.
    UT Humanities Center Room 2229 Dunford Hall, 2nd Floor

Fall 2019

  • Friday, October 25, 2019, 1:00-2:00 P.M.
    Marco Seminar Room #615, 6th Floor

  • Friday, December 6, 2019, 12:30-2:00 P.M.
    UT Humanities Center Room 2229 Dunford Hall, 2nd Floor

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