medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture
Let's take a deep breath, everybody. A few observations:
1) It's only a surmise that these positions are intended to replace the professorship in Palaeography. I think it unlikely that they are. KCL must have an approval process for new staff positions. Given that such processes are seldom swift, the positions probably were requested months ago, if not longer. They address operational needs of the Centre. The Professor of Palaeography is not associated with KCL's Centre for Computing in the Humanities, and his activities and its seem not to overlap. Here's David Ganz's list of duties:
And here's the Centre's list of projects:
2) Since the invention first of moveable type and later of digitally encoded analogs for type, vast amounts of text not requiring palaeographical expertise for their de-coding (reading) and re-encoding have been created in the Humanities. Thus to suggest that the texts that these people will be working with will necessarily require palaeographical expertise seems curiously blinkered. There will certainly be times when such expertise will be needed. But not always, by any stretch of the imagination. Even when it _is_ needed, it should not take much reflection to realize that, in the case of an academic department whose activities range from the Dead Sea Scrolls to the Archive of Desmond Tutu, the particular expertise required may be beyond the purview of the professor of Palaeography.
3) In some cases, the problem-solving ability in question may entail an ability to recognize particular palaeographical needs and to obtain from others assistance in meeting these. At my university's smaller but still very varied digital humanities center, the same senior staff person has at different times had to deal with matters beyond his expertise involving characters and other signs in late medieval and early modern Greek scripts, early modern Icelandic manuscripts, early nineteenth-century German written documents, and doubtless others of which I'm not aware. Expecting him to have personal expertise in all these areas would be unrealistic. He's reached out and gotten the assistance he needed.
4) My university does not have a professor of Palaeography (nor do most: KCL claims to have the only established chair of Palaeography in the English-speaking world). Graduate-level introductions to the palaeography of particular languages are offered in several departments, though not as uniformly or as regularly as could be desired. And they are taught by people who themselves are not primarily paleographers, though their acquired skill level in this area is high. KCL is de-emphasising palaeography. That's regrettable. But does it follow from the elimination of the professorship that the skills in question will not be taught there at some level by some qualified person or persons?
University of Wisconsin-Madison
On Friday, January 29, 2010, at 1:03 pm, Frans van Liere wrote:
> Indeed. One of the skills for the new job is "strong ... problem solving
> skills". You'll need that if you can't read the stuff you'll be
> working with.
> Frans van Liere
> Department of History, Calvin College
> 1845 Knollcrest Circle SE
> Grand Rapids, MI 49546-4402
> e-mail: [log in to unmask]
> >>> "Cormack, Margaret Jean" <[log in to unmask]> 1/29/2010 1:14 PM >>>
> medieval-religion: Scholarly discussions of medieval religion and culture
> Note what Paleography is being replaced with.
> What use are text-based projects without a paleographer?
> Job posting: three Project Research Associates required
> [With apologies for cross-posting]
> The Centre for Computing in the Humanities, King's College London is looking
> for three highly motivated and technically sophisticated individuals
> to work on
> its text-based research projects. The positions will involve using computer
> tools and methods to facilitate digital scholarship.
> CCH is both a department with responsibility for its own academic programme
> and a research centre promoting the appropriate application of
> computing in
> humanities research. Its research projects cover a wide range of humanities
> disciplines, including medieval studies, history, literature and linguistics,
> and music, and also include a number of more general information management
> projects in both humanities and the social sciences.
> The successful candidates will possess strong analytical and problem solving
> skills: they will be required to identify and engage with the core scholarly
> questions in a highly collaborative research context; to analyse a
> wide variety
> of humanities materials and to model them using XML-related
> technologies; to
> design and develop systems for editing and delivering text-based scholarly
> materials and to collaborate in the design of integrated HTML-based
> publication. Experience in creating and manipulating XML documents in
> a range
> of XML-related standards and technologies (DTDs, XPath, XSLT) is highly
> desirable, in particular textual materials encoded according to the Text
> Encoding Initiative's guidelines.
> All successful candidates will need to have a good understanding of how
> research is conducted in the humanities and social sciences and will be
> expected to make a strong contribution to the departmental research profile.
> They will need to be able to work effectively as part of a team, as
> well as
> independently. They must have good communication skills and the
> ability to
> document their work in clear written English.
> One position is for one year on Fixed Term Contract (Maternity Cover)
> - within
> the Grade 5 scale, currently £28,074 to £32,176, inclusive of London
> Two positions are for one year on Fixed Term Contract - within the
> Grade 6
> scale, currently £30,070 to £39,038 per annum, inclusive of London Allowance.
> Closing date: 12th February 2010
> Please view and apply for positions at the following URLs:
> Paul Spence
> Project Manager (Digital Text)
> Centre for Computing in the Humanities
> King's College London
> 26-29 Drury Lane
> WC2B 5RL
> [log in to unmask]
To join the list, send the message: join medieval-religion YOUR NAME
to: [log in to unmask]
To send a message to the list, address it to:
[log in to unmask]
To leave the list, send the message: leave medieval-religion
to: [log in to unmask]
In order to report problems or to contact the list's owners, write to:
[log in to unmask]
For further information, visit our web site: