Spring 2023 DH Classes
Spring 2023 DH Classes
Looking for classes to take this spring? Yale will be offering more DH-related courses than ever. Here are some options that will help you learn Python and GIS, discover new computational tools for archaeology, explore ethical questions involving big data and public health, and much more. Courses range from theoretical considerations of technology and the digital humanities to hands-on practice with digital methods.
For more detailed information about prerequisites and enrollment, please see the full course descriptions at courses.yale.edu.
If you are teaching a course connected to DH and would like it included in the list below, or if you would like someone from the Yale Digital Humanities Lab to speak with your class, please email the DHLab.
AMST 268 / EP&E 399 / ER&M 295 / FILM 268
Platforms—digital infrastructures that mediate between end-users and complementors—have emerged in various economic sectors, from social media (Instagram) and video streaming (YouTube) to ride-hailing (Uber), e-commerce (Amazon), and finance (PayPal). This multidisciplinary seminar studies platforms as hybrids of firms and multi-sided markets with unique governance and infrastructures. Through case studies from around the world, the class examines how platforms have transformed connectivity, labor, creativity, and democracy. It also considers how contemporary capitalism and digital economies intersect with topics such as inequality, surveillance, decentralization, and cooperation.
AMST 269 / ER&M 330 / SAST 262
From drones and autonomous robots to algorithmic warfare, virtual war gaming, and data mining, digital war has become a key issue of our times. Not only has warfare been shaped by digital technologies; technologies such as GPS, stealth technology, personal computing, and the Internet also have been conditioned through modern conflict. This class provides a critical overview of the links between war and technology. Drawing on visual media, fiction, art, and scholarly texts, students will examine digital war’s connections to colonialism and imperialism, as well as its effects on those targeted.
Spatial Analysis for Archaeology
ANTH 476 / ARCG 476
This class offers an introduction to the use of geographical information systems (GIS) in anthropology, with particular attention to GIS applications in archaeology. In addition to gaining familiarity with current GIS software, students will study examples from a range of contexts, from the theoretical to the analytical to the geographical.
Imaging Ancient Worlds in Museum Collections
ANTH 492 / ANTH 692 / ARCG 492 / ARCG 692 / NELC 321 / NELC 537
Klaus Wagensonner and Agnete Lassen
This class considers the merits, challenges, and best practices of digitizing cultural heritage. Using the archaeological artifacts in the Yale Babylonian Collection as case studies, students will learn how new computer graphics technologies—including 3D imaging—can be used to document and interpret archaeological artifacts. The course also will explore how these imaging techniques can support archaeological and anthropological research more generally.
Cultural AI: Machine Vision, Art, and Design
Artificial intelligence (AI) promises to transform art and design, both by replacing human labor and by altering and displacing human creativity. This course seeks to understand this new machine-mediated visual culture, find opportunities for intervention, and identify avenues for critique and resistance. Topics will include the historical role of algorithms; the idea of creation and design as an algorithmic, even machinic, process; and the shift to the black box of machine learning and the birth of “cultural AI.” Students additionally will use AI platforms such as Runway ML to develop their own design proposals.
Rendered: Art, Architecture, and Contemporary Image Culture
This course examines digital production and image making in art and architecture at a time when consumers of culture, including architects, are inundated by digital images. In addition to considering the current and future role of the image as an architectural medium, the class will study the Internet’s impact on contemporary art; recent writing on aesthetic concepts, including post-digital, post-medium, and the new aesthetic; and the effect of contemporary image culture on authorship, materiality, and representation. Students also will produce a hybrid image-object situated in both a physical and an online context.
Note: This class will open for registration on Jan. 12. Yale College students must request permission to register using the “Request to Enroll in a Professional School Course” form (“Blue Form”). Professional and graduate students outside the Yale School of Architecture should submit the “Request to Take Course at Architecture (Graduate or Professional School)” form.
Introduction to the Digital Humanities for the Premodern World
CLSS 840 / HSAR 567
Introduction to Applications of Computer and Data Science for the Digital Humanities
Advanced Applications of Computer and Data Science for the Digital Humanities
- For CLSS 840 / HSAR 567: No prior programming experience necessary.
- For CPSC 276: CPSC 110, CPSC 112, equivalent programming experience, or permission of the instructor.
- For CPSC 376: CPSC 223 or equivalent, or permission of the instructor.
Python Programming for Humanities and Social Sciences
Intended for non-STEM majors, this class offers an introduction to Python programming and computing techniques useful in the humanities and social sciences. Topics will include abstraction, algorithms, data structures, web development, and statistical tools. Previous programming experience is not required.
Opera, Media, Technologies
This seminar explores how media studies and science and technology studies can help us understand opera, and what opera can contribute to histories of electronic and digital multimedia. Students will examine a wide range of medial configurations in opera: the Baroque picture-frame stage, HD broadcasts, Florentine intermedi, site-specific experiments, Bayreuth, and Zoom opera. Theoretical topics may include discourses on eventness and mediation, audiovisual immersion strategies, the development of illusionist stage devices, the function of screens, the orchestra as technology, and Wagner’s ideal of the Gesamtkunstwerk. Reading knowledge of Western musical notation is helpful but not required for students outside the Music department.
Geographic Information Systems
EVST 290 / URBN 319
This course provides a practical introduction to the nature and use of geographic information systems (GIS) in environmental science and management. Spanning data acquisition, creation, storage, management, visualization, animation, transformation, analysis, and synthesis, the class will equip students with a variety of techniques for working with digital cartographic data.
Critical Data Visualization: History, Theory, and Practice
EVST 349 / HIST 449J / HSHM 449 / URBN 382
This class offers a critical analysis of data visualization, with an emphasis on the theory and politics of visual communication. In addition to examining historical data graphics from the late eighteenth century onward, students will study graphic semiology, ideals of objectivity and honesty, and recent developments in feminist and participatory data design. Technical tutorials in data visualization will be integrated into the course meetings, and optional support will be offered for advanced programming and mapping software. Prior software experience is not required.
Time Machines: Reimagining the Past
This seminar explores the concept of time machines, the ways they might be (or are) constructed, and how representations of the past can help us reimagine and “travel” to other times. Topics of discussion include the physics of time travel; how historians reconstruct times past; the extent to which novelists complement, contradict, or complicate the work of historians; and the possibility of “animating” past visual representations, whether through art, film, or computer simulation. Students also will pursue individual projects using digital newspaper archives, focusing on a particular place and time.
Big Data, Privacy, and Public Health Ethics
This course provides an introduction to ethical theory and decision-making, drawing on real-world case studies at the intersection of big data and public health. Students will discuss the sharing of patient medical information by hospitals and health systems; issues relating to pharmaceutical industry data, such as demographic inclusion and representation in clinical trials, experimental medicine access outside of trials, and whether drug companies have a duty to share data to advance financially unprofitable drugs; and venture philanthropy’s role in generating clinical trial data and advancing drug development.
Note: Although this course is intended primarily for M.P.H. students, it is open to all Yale students, including undergraduates.
Art and Technology
This introductory course surveys the relationship between art and technology, from prehistoric cave art and rock art to the rise of NFTs. Drawing on a wide variety of artistic media, the class will explore topics such as the use of textiles as data storage before the advent of the computer; technologies for representing space in European and Asian painting, and the centrality of Arab science in developing linear perspective during the Renaissance; the cybernetic revolution and the rise of computers; biometrics and surveillance; and machine learning and art without artists. Sections may include visits to collections and sites across Yale’s campus.
Computational Representation and the Humanities/Arts
This interdisciplinary class considers how form and content shape each other, both in the sciences and technology and in the arts and humanities. Examples will be drawn from literature, visual arts, music, virtual and augmented reality, and film, focusing especially on their relationships to technology and to computation; secondary readings will include critical theory, philosophy, and articles on science and society. Whenever possible, the course will incorporate hands-on making and exploration.
Thinking Digitally about the Humanities
This class provides undergraduates with an overview of the field of digital humanities. Over the course of the semester, students will learn how methods drawn from information science, such as data analytics and artificial intelligence, can be applied to humanistic disciplines, such as the visual arts and textual analysis.
Introduction to Digital Humanities II: Algorithmic Approaches to Culture
Alexander Gil Fuentes
This course introduces computational methods for studying historical and cultural data. It combines a seminar, brief lectures, and a digital studio, using hands-on exercises to illuminate the assigned readings and help students gain computational proficiency. Class members also will collaborate on common computational research tasks and learn to understand popular DH methods connected to what is now called “cultural analytics.” Previous computational experience is not required, and students need not have taken Part I of this class (SPAN 984: Introduction to Digital Humanities I: Architectures of Knowledge).
Digital Humanities Practical Workshop Series
Alexander Gil Fuentes
Seminar in Digital and Computational Methods in the Humanities
SPAN 984 and HUMS 500 comprise DH workshops for graduate students, which range from stand-alone sessions to workshop series on a particular theme or toolset. These workshops are offered every term. Topics may include text analysis, web scraping and data mining, digital editions and exhibits, dissertation and general academic tech, advanced scholarly (re)search techniques, interactive maps and visualizations, data and project management, privacy and security, copyright law, cultural analytics, and more. Workshops also are available on demand at the request of four or more graduate students.
Note: Students planning to attend six or more workshops should enroll in SPAN 984. Students planning to attend fewer than six workshops should register for HUMS 500.
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