Text Accessibility and Non-Roman Script Systems on HathiTrust – Translate Midwest

Text Accessibility and Non-Roman Script Systems on HathiTrust

What’s Wrong with this Picture?

These images are taken from the HathiTrust repository. This is a text written in Persian by Sayyid Jamāl al-Din. What’s wrong with it? It is upside down, and it appears backward, with the volume beginning on the last page (the 36th and last page of the digital version contain the book’s cover, and it proceeds in reverse order).   

This example illustrates the difficulty in accessibility to digitized texts written in non-Roman writing systems, that are often inserted and cataloged incorrectly, making the task of the researcher that much harder. This fall, the Mellon Sawyer seminar Building Translation Networks in the Midwest with HathiTrust, led by Christi Merrill, will consider the needs of scholars working in different languages and especially in the non-Roman and non-alphabetic writing systems, explore the challenges and possibilities of the HathiTrust repository, and work collaboratively and interactively to address such issues of accessibility in translation. 

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