Annals of Scholarship Special Issue: "Reading the World of Big Data," Dec. 20 Abstract Deadline

full name / name of organization: 
Ben Miller and Oriana Gatta

Journal: Annals of Scholarship
Title: Reading the World of Big Data
Contact Emails:,

The scale of collections addressed in the humanities has always included daunting volumes of material ranging from the oeuvre of an author, artist, or composer to the corpus of a period. Increasingly robust information technology, the adoption and reconceptualization of techniques from multiple disciplines, and a proliferation of technical skills has enabled humanists to ask research questions requiring analysis and interpretation of even more daunting collections, such as the 5.2 million books of the Google Books corpus, the 80,000,000 records of the Guatemalan National Police Historical Archive, and the approximately 5 billion words added each day to the Twitter corpus.

These vast corpora seem to demand new kinds of high-throughput reading in order for their contents to be made comprehensible. This special issue of Annals of Scholarship requests critical and technical articles, interviews with practitioners, and reviews of methods and texts that address the core questions of a) how humanists, broadly defined, create meaning from large collections of data; and b) what are the implications of the adoption and development of these methods.

The editors invite articles (4–6000 words), interviews (4–6000 words), and book and project reviews (1,000 words) that respond to this focus. Submissions are invited from data analysts, methods and software developers, and critical theorists. General inquiries and ideas for interviews and book/project reviews should be addressed to: Ben Miller ( and Oriana Gatta ( at Georgia State University.

Since 1980 Annals of Scholarship, a widely subscribed print journal, has been promoting the study of the development of methodological and historical criteria in all the disciplines with an emphasis on the interaction between Art Practices and the Human Sciences in a Global Culture.

Abstracts (500 words): due December 20, 2011 with a plan to submit by March 26, 2012.