What is Digital Humanities?
The Humanities are academic disciplines which study human culture (i.e. arts, literature, philosophy etc.) Looking at these disciplines through digital technologies allows us to see new connections and patterns.
You can think of digital humanities as an intersection of humanities and arts disciplines and computing. It involves both the examination of how digital tools can be applied to humanities subjects, and how these humanities subjects influence knowledge of computing (Kirschenbaum 2010).
It is, therefore, always interdisciplinary. Digital humanities is a relatively recent field of study emerging, as humanities scholars are discovering more and more how computation tools are used to further scholarly understanding of their topics of research. The large amounts of digital information available has led to the opportunity to generate new methods of analyzing material. Tools such as data mining, text mining, and digital mapping prove valuable to many other disciplines.
Distant reading is the process of discovering trends, topics, genres, networks, connections, and other information from a vast body of literature, texts, and primary sources. Computer processes, such as text and topic analysis, are used in order to reveal patterns about information that would otherwise be too large or difficult for human analysis.
Digital humanities use both geospatial, network, and text visualization methods in order to help make sense of place and space in primary texts, understand how historical social networks operate, and display quantitative trends discovered in texts.
Access to Primary Sources
There are a variety of reasons that computers and digital networks are used in the humanities: access to digitized and born-digital primary sources being one of the most popular reasons.
For a complete list of Digital Humanities activities: