Why Make an Electronic Thesis in the Humanities?


In comparison to many other countries-most notably Canada, the United States,and the United Kingdom-the disciplines that form the humanities in Australia have made few visible inroads into advancing humanities knowledge on-line. There are no dedicated humanities computing centres in Australia, there are few individuals working in the field, and Australians are not well-represented on international committees (or conferences) that discuss how on-line technologies can effectively address humanities problems.

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Humanities Computing


…to understand the legitimacy of a culture we need to investigate its relation to the archive, the site for the accumulation of records. Archive reason is a kind of reason which is concerned with detail, it constantly directs us away from the big generalisations, down to the particularity and singularity of the event. Increasingly the focus has shifted from archiving the lives of the good and the great down to the detail of mundane everyday life. (Mike Featherstone, 2000)

With a particular emphasis on hypertext theory, coupled with a survey of the field of Humanities Computing, I will explicate how Milkbar.com.au positions itself within the eclectic applications of online electronic scholarship in the Humanities.[1] Hypertext theory has (since the early 1960s) made significant inroads into the Humanities because hypertext is the seminal concept energising the global Internet.[2] And Humanities Computing is the most influential field of practice-based computing in the Humanities. Milkbar.com.au borrows practices from both Humanities Computing and hypertext discourse.

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