Happenings at the Institute of Historical Research

I started following the both the British Library and the Institute of Historical Research on Twitter a while back, and both of them, as might be expected, keep churning out too much good stuff to keep track of easily (give the IHR Digital and Publications pages a glance, while you’re at it; also, they’ve started posting video guides on how to use the collections.).  Whether it’s their own material, or retweets of other events and initiatives, they have their fingers on the digital pulse, so to speak. Anyway, I’ve had this post in mind for a while.  The British Library will get its own post later on…no offence meant! (see, I even spell’d “offense” the “correct” way!)  What follows is in no particular order…

Seriously, if you like history, and you’re at all into this “digital age” thing, subscribe to the IHR’s twitter feed @ihr_history.  I’ve found their links to the institute’s book reviews section alone to be invaluable–such as King’s new biography of King Stephen, or Watson’s new study of combat and morale in World War I.

Part of the IHR library is relocating while Senate House gets “refurbished.” Details can be found here.

There have been a couple posts on the new initiative Recensio, a major online review site made possible by “cooperating journals,”  and several major German research institutes.

Recent digitization grants awarded by the Joint Information Systems Committee (JISC).

A fascinating collection of Victorian-era maps, well worth examining.

A link to a recent article in The Telegraph, reporting Simon Schama’s dour prognosis of the humanities in Britain under the current government.  He also berates academics who make history boring…I’m sure I don’t know where he’s getting that from!

Mediacommons, doing an open peer-reviewed issue of Shakespeare Quarterly, on “Shakespeare and Performance.”  I’m not sure I agree with the not-too-subtle suggestion contained in the web address–futureofthebook.org!!! Now I’m all for digital initiatives, obviously, but I like books, and I think a lot of people do too. I like an object I can read in daylight without electricity, and not simply out of some kind of subconscious Luddite impulse–it’s simply more convenient, and better for the eyes. Ok, that rant aside, I’ve seen this type of open peer review experiment before, and it could go far.

The Victoria&Albert Museum is putting together a historical photo archive of wedding fashions.

There’s a movement to create a national holiday in memory of the German refugees from Eastern Europe at the end of the Second World War. This is being protested by a number of historians in Germany, Austria, the Czech Republic, and Poland, joining the Polish government and Germany’s Central Council of Jews. I find it curious that it is Merkel’s government that is proposing this event… Anyone detect undertones of Hillgruber’s Zweierlei Untergang?

And some VERY cool stuff here: the Darwin Correspondence Project, digitizing Darwin’s letters (as you may have guessed), and a description of the IHR’s new search “facility,” to be unveiled in March, Connected Histories. You can read about it at IHR Digital, or at the interesting site Early Modern Notes, which as details of the workshop on March 31.

Finally, because one must end somewhere, a great article on “The Lost Art of Editing,” from the Guardian.

Now, to work on applications and chapter 4…Have a good day!

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