Study in a Second Discipline: Amelia Opie and DH

amelia_opieThis semester English Professor Roxanne Eberle has been awarded the opportunity to work in the Provost’s Office Study in a Second Discipline program to gain skills in the Digital Humanities. Over the course of the semester Eberle has worked in conjunction with Digital Humanities Coordinator Emily McGinn, and Assistant Professor in Digital Humanities and History, Scott Nesbit, in a directed study to learn more about the methods, issues, and tools in the digital humanities.

The main focus of this endeavor is to gain skills in TEI and XML with the goal of creating a digital edition of Amelia Alderson Opie’s letters. Opie was a well-known poet, tale writers, and novelist, whose work appeared in print from 1790-1844. She was contemporaries with Mary Wollstonecraft, William Godwin, and Lord Byron.

This project stems from Eberle’s decades long interest in Opie. Her research has led her to countless archives looking for Opie’s correspondence and she has transcribed hundreds of handwritten letters. Now, with this collection in hand, she has been working in the DigiLab to digitize these transcriptions and mark them up using TEI. The final project will be encoded in such as way as to identify Opie’s correspondence networks and her unique language use.

Eberle has now completed a schema for encoding her letters, and in the Spring (release date June 21, 2017) she will create a prototype for her digital edition using a subset of 16 letters that best exemplify Opie’s larger body of correspondence. She hopes to connect her set of TEI encoded letters with other archives of correspondence from the Romantic Period including the Romantic Circles project and the Shelley Godwin Archive.

Eberle will discuss this exciting project in the Digi Colloquium in January (details to follow).

Learn more about Eberle’s work.