I am honored to have an essay, “Electronic Literature as Comparative Literature,” included in the 2014 – 2015 Report on the State of the Discipline of Comparative Literature, edited by David Damrosch (Harvard) and Ursula Heise (UCLA). http://stateofthediscipline.acla.org/
It’s out, and it has my entry, “The Impact of Old Media on New Media.”
up and running at http://www.digitalmodernism.net/
And here’s what my the great women of digital literary scholarship say about it:
“A pioneering study with brilliant readings of important works of digital literature, Digital Modernism is a landmark work of literary criticism, a must-read for anyone interested in how contemporary literature fares in the digital domain.” –N. Katherine Hayles, author of How We Think: Digital Media and Contemporary Technogenesis
“In this lucid, informed, and consequential book, Jessica Pressman enacts the strategy she theorizes. To argue that writing moves forward by looking back, she repurposes print-based critical practices of close reading to parse a pixel-based creativity she calls ‘digital modernism.’ This exhilarating spin draws McLuhan, Pound, and Joyce into the contemporary making of the new.” –Adalaide Morris, author of New Media Poetics: Contexts, Technotexts, and Theories
“Pressman’s wonderfully elegant close readings show us how to engage some of the most complex creative works of our moment, even as they help us see literary modernism anew. A book for both established scholars and a new generation of critics, Digital Modernism superbly prescribes the terms for the study of electronic literature.” –Rita Raley, author of Tactical Media
Get yours today!
The first review I’ve seen of Comparative Textual Media: Transforming the Humanities in the Postprint Era, and it’s a good one!
The review concludes, “The clear theoretical, methodological, didactic, and institutional program of this book and the electrifying qualities of the essays that illustrate it make Comparative Textual Media not only a landmark publication, but a sign of hope for textual studies in general.”
–Jan Baetens – in Image & Narrative, 2014
I’m happy to say that Comparative Textual Media: Transforming the Humanities in a Postprint Era (University of Minnesota Press) is now out! I am very proud of this collection. It contains stellar pieces by some of the sharpest minds in media studies, and it is anchored in a polemic about the need for Literature departments to rethink the relevance of what we do. It is also a particularly important project for me, as it is a collaboration with my dissertation adviser and professional hero, N. Katherine Hayles.
The book’s description is below:
For the past few hundred years, Western cultures have relied on print. When writing was accomplished by a quill pen, inkpot, and paper, it was easy to imagine that writing was nothing more than a means by which writers could transfer their thoughts to readers. The proliferation of technical media in the latter half of the twentieth century has revealed that the relationship between writer and reader is not so simple. From telegraphs and typewriters to wire recorders and a sweeping array of digital computing devices, the complexities of communications technology have made mediality a central concern of the twenty-first century.
Despite the attention given to the development of the media landscape, relatively little is being done in our academic institutions to adjust. In Comparative Textual Media, editors N. Katherine Hayles and Jessica Pressman bring together an impressive range of essays from leading scholars to address the issue, among them Matthew Kirschenbaum on archiving in the digital era, Patricia Crain on the connection between a child’s formation of self and the possession of a book, and Mark Marino exploring how to read a digital text not for content but for traces of its underlying code.
Primarily arguing for seeing print as a medium along with the scroll, electronic literature, and computer games, this volume examines the potential transformations if academic departments embraced a media framework. Ultimately, Comparative Textual Media offers new insights that allow us to understand more deeply the implications of the choices we, and our institutions, are making.
Contributors: Stephanie Boluk, Vassar College; Jessica Brantley, Yale U; Patricia Crain, NYU; Adriana de Souza e Silva, North Carolina State U; Johanna Drucker, UCLA; Thomas Fulton, Rutgers U; Lisa Gitelman, New York U; William A. Johnson, Duke U; Matthew G. Kirschenbaum, U of Maryland; Patrick LeMieux; Mark C. Marino, U of Southern California; Rita Raley, U of California, Santa Barbara; John David Zuern, U of Hawai‘i at Mānoa.
Very proud that our special issue of Digital Humanities Quarterly– “The Literary”– is now online. I co-edited this baby with Lisa Swanstrom, and it shines a spotlight on the intersection of the literary and the digital humanities. Lisa and I wrote an introduction to the issue, framing the issue and arguing for the importance and centrality of the literary in an age of digital data and digital humanities.