“The Book Unbound: Enhancing Multilayered Digital Publications through Collaboration”
September 1, 2017 – August 31, 2019
“The Book Unbound” brings faculty, graduate students, and undergraduates from three fields along with information professionals from the School of Information, the University of Michigan Press, and the University Library to work together on a set of publications that address multiple audiences by providing varying digitized experiences for each. One layer of each of the three publications will speak to the public square, offering multimedia texts that convey research in forms accessible to non-experts. All three publications will include a second layer addressed to experts, employing various representations associated with long-form texts. The third layer for all three will be comprised of the data and archival sources on which the research is based, amplifying the experience of the first and second layers and providing a resource for other researchers interested in similar projects. This project focuses on the processes of collaboration at the same time that offers new ways of presenting research. The collaborators represent the fields of archaeology, cinema and media studies and writing studies, and they all bring their own questions. The archaeologists ask what the Gabii site can tell us about urban planning and architectural evolution in central Italy during the first millennium BCE. Colleagues in cinema and media studies ask what Orson Welles’s unproduced script “The Heart of Darkness” can tell us about the wartime cultural context in which the film was planned but never actually made. And the writing studies group asks what we can learn about the development of student writers from a longitudinal study of undergraduates at Michigan. Together these projects ask what humanists can learn from working together to create a new form of digital publication (PI: Anne Gere and Nic Terrenato).