Mellon Sawyer Seminar Series | Recuperating Forgotten Narratives with Ayesha Hardison

This is an Archive of a Past Event

This is the eighth event in the Mellon Sawyer Seminar series, The Data that Divides Us: Recalibrating Data Methods for New Knowledge Frameworks Across the Humanities, generously funded by the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation. During Stanford University's 2023–24 academic year, the Sawyer Seminar Series has convened scholars from a variety of disciplinary perspectives and personal standpoints to discuss the data that has saturated our world.

Professor Ayesha Hardison will talk about the work of digitizing and making accessible the history of Black writing, as texts and recordings are collected, curated and transformed from an archival project to data and digital texts, sounds and visuals. Following the talk, there will be a response by Chloé Brault (PhD candidate in Comparative Literature at Stanford).

Previous seminars in our series have attended to divisions, but also possibilities, engendered by data along various fault lines and contexts (from 19th-century statistical thinking to biases in archives, from the challenges of quantification to the history of data governance). With this seminar on "Recuperating Forgotten Narratives" we focus on what happens to text when it is digitized and turned into data. What new possibilities open up with this type of textual data? What new narratives can be written about past and present textual traditions? What remains irretrievable?


About the Speaker

Ayesha K. Hardison is Associate Professor of English and Women, Gender, and Sexuality Studies at the University of Kansas. Her research and teaching explore questions of race, gender, genre, social politics, and historical memory. She is the author of Writing through Jane Crow: Race and Gender Politics in African American Literature (University of Virginia Press, 2014), is co-editor with Eve Dunbar of African American Literature in Transition: 1930–1940 (Cambridge University Press, 2022), and has published several book chapters as well as articles in African American Review and Meridians. Hardison has received fellowships and awards from the National Endowment for the Humanities, Schomburg Center Scholars-In-Residence Program, Black Metropolis Research Consortium, National Humanities Center Summer Residency Program, Humanities Kansas, and the Ford Foundation. She is director of the History of Black Writing (HBW) and co-editor of the multidisciplinary journal Women, Gender, and Families of Color.  She also works on the Mellon funded project Stories for All: A Digital Storytelling Project for the Twenty-First Century and co-directs Project on the History of Black Writing.

Visit this website for more information