As scholars, even digitally-minded scholars, even blogging scholars, we tend to ask ourselves how we can make our blogs more scholarly. We wonder how the blog can come to approximate the scholarly journal, or at least how it can reproduce its core values of evidence, citation, narrative argument, and peer-review. Even when acknowledging the inherent differences between blogs and journals, we still tend to argue for the former on the latter’s turf.

I’d like to take a session to step back from this discussion to look at public history blogs [full stop]. I’d like to take a step back from the prevailing discourse of “scholarly blogs” to talk about how the inherent affordances and values of blogging can benefit public historical work, absent any pressure to reproduce traditional forms and values. How can straight-up blogging–minus the baggage of “scholarly” aspirations–work for public history and its audiences? Is straight-up blogging enough? Or should we really be thinking about “scholarly blogging” after all?

It’s likely that this session will overlap with David’s session on the future of digital scholarly publishing.

Categories: Blogging, Session Proposals |

About Tom Scheinfeldt

Tom is Director-at-Large of CHNM and Research Assistant Professor of History in the Department of History and Art History at George Mason University. Starting in the Fall of 2013, Tom will be Associate Professor of Digital Culture and Director of Digital Humanities at the UCONN Digital Media Center.Tom blogs at Found History, co-hosts Digital Campus with Dan, Mills, and Amanda. He is @foundhistory on Twitter. He is contemplating abandoning his academic position to make his fortune by securing exclusive catering rights to THATCamp for his next brainchild, THATHotDogStand.

5 Responses to Blogs.

  1. I like this idea, too, and think both of these sessions might also take up some of the currently circulating questions about what a new NCPH journal should look like. There are meetings going on during the NCPH meeting about that topic; those could be informed by these discussions about blogging, scholarly blogging, and the future of digital scholarly publishing. I’d be interested in participating in the discussions of related issues within THATCamp.

  2. I think focusing on blogging without the “scholaring” talk is an important issue for many insitutions and blogwriters. I am interested to learn more about balancing the information and content, with the stylistic approach that leads to more blog audience, rather then a demographic of ONLY scholars.

  3. Thanks for posting this idea, Tom, and also noting the potential overlap with David’s session idea. If one or both of these sessions go onto the schedule, I recommend doing it later in the day, since David commented that his plane arrives at MKE at 9:30am.

  4. Cathy Stanton says:

    Really interested in this idea, Tom. As Anne said, it’s a natural complement to our discussions about what “History@Work” might become and where NCPH might be headed with its new journal-and-perhaps-related-digital-content plans.

  5. Pingback: Blogs. | THATCamp National Council on Public History 2012 « VanRanke and Droysen

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