Comments for THATCamp Eco-Critical DH 2016 Just another THATCamp site Fri, 06 May 2016 15:58:31 +0000 hourly 1 Comment on Environmentally Conscious Scholarly Communication by jilliana Flowers Fri, 06 May 2016 15:58:31 +0000 Landscaping crisis in suburban America
America’s suburbia is an ecological nightmare do to the industrialization of landscaping – what once was gardening. And the worst offender is by far the primitive leaf blower. Our communities sound like war zones with landscaping trunks the size of tanks deploying three to eight men armed with landscaping weapons and poison.
The ubiquitous noise is shrill, invasive and chronic. The 100 mph hot CO2 fumes blow toxic particulate matter, animal decay, waste water, fecal matter, mold, tick born disease, pesticides, as well as spreading invasive species and poisons 20 feet into the air which is carried by wind current. The pollutants then rain down on our homes, communities, kids, pets, gardens and schools etc.
And the workers themselves are chronically at high risk for cancer, lyme’s disease, eye and hearing loss, as well as skin, lung and immune system disease.
The hot blown CO2 gas fume kill hundreds of heathy microorganisms, nesting creatures, smaller animals, insects, flora culture and poisons pollen and leaves which is food for larger wildlife. We are contaminating our vegetable gardens and one leaf blower can contaminate up 14 neighborhood homes with toxic dust.
Communities that have banned leaf blowers have found that the work gets done faster and more efficiently. No one is at risk; workers learn to garden which enables self-esteem and a trade rather than standing around running machine engines just to pass an hour and get paid.
It’s a win win win situation.
Let make our suburban areas green again …

I am passing on this information in hope that we will demand a change – Mow Blow Go landscaping routine is barbaric and not acceptable means of keeping America green.

Comment on Eco-Critical DH Discussion Ideas by Michael Newton Fri, 26 Feb 2016 12:57:16 +0000 Digital Humanities projects by definition represent things, especially things that have materiality, and the humanities are largely the product of institutions established by industrialized empires and nation-states. This causes a particular bias in representation and privilege in that cultures that produce more stuff and hence greater environmental impact (monumental architecture, restructuring the landscape, the resource extraction necessary to produce these things …) have greater prestige and visibility. Is there some way in which technology can be used to “write back” against these biases and provide a counter-weight using the intangible cultural heritage of peoples of non-industrial societies and more environmentally sustainable lifestyles?

Comment on Eco-Critical DH Discussion Ideas by Michael Newton Fri, 26 Feb 2016 12:51:06 +0000 Social network graphs are enjoying popularity at present. Would it be possible to model at least some of the interdependencies of particular ecosystems in a network graph, making visible what some of these interdependencies are and then ask what would happen if that network were disrupted in some way? What would happen to other dependent species if the mosquito that carries Zika were eliminated, for example?

Comment on Eco-Critical DH Discussion Ideas by Michael Newton Fri, 26 Feb 2016 01:05:14 +0000 Another topic. It has been argued that environmental sustainability requires a much stronger, deeper and meaningful commitment to place/location than has been facilitated by the commodification of land as real estate and extractable resources. Rather than the use of technology for “virtual reality” — taking us away from the place and time in which we are actually alive — could technology be used to augment our sense of rootedness to a place, to allow us to dig deeper into the ecological vitality and potentiality of it, and become more invested in all of the types of community (biological, cultural and spiritual) that are connected to and imbued with that place?

Comment on Eco-Critical DH Discussion Ideas by Michael Newton Fri, 26 Feb 2016 01:00:04 +0000 Imagine, for example, that goods can not only be assigned “carbon units” (to represent their costs), but that you can visualize a map of the locations from which their components were harvested, a timeline of the time needed to (re)generate their base substances, see a graph of the amount of energy needed to extract, process and manufacture it, the type and cost of travel needed for all of the constituent components, etc.

Comment on Eco-Critical DH Discussion Ideas by Michael Newton Thu, 25 Feb 2016 21:52:10 +0000 Some more brainstorming ideas: People generally have no way of seeing or understanding the repercussions of their habits and consumptions on places and things beyond their individual and immediate space and perception, despite the global reach and impact of the processes that go into producing the goods of our daily lives. One of the ways in which environmentalists have conceptualized measuring human and individual impact is by measuring or estimating our “ecological footprint”. There are a few apps which attempt to provide some measure of ecological footprint based on individual purchases how might these initial efforts be improved? What else might be done or measured or represented?