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Brontës in the World

Title: The Brontës in the World: Creating a Digital Bibliography to Expand Access to Single-Language Sources.
Name(s): Pascoe, Judith, author
Hunter, Matthew Eric, author
Type of Resource: text
Genre: Text
Conference Poster
Date Issued: 2018-09-09
Physical Form: computer
online resource
Extent: 1 online resource
Language(s): English
Abstract/Description: This poster outlines our experience with using Zotero, a free and open-source citation management tool, to make Japanese translations and adaptations of Emily Brontë’s classic novel Wuthering Heights more accessible to scholars and fans who do not have command of Japanese. Leading this project are Professor Judith Pascoe, the George Mills Harper Professor of English at Florida State University (FSU), and Matthew Hunter, the Digital Scholarship Technologist at FSU Libraries. Prof. Pascoe’s research interests include Romantic-era literature and cross-cultural adaptation. Mr. Hunter’s work centers on applications of emerging technology in humanities scholarship and pedagogy. “The Brontës in the World” is the first iteration of a collaborative, multidisciplinary project carried out by undergraduate researchers at Florida State University under the direction of Pascoe and Hunter. The work is enabled by a partnership with the FSU Undergraduate Research Opportunity Program (UROP), which encourages undergraduate students to discover and explore their own research interests with mentorship from university faculty. We designed this project to build on Pascoe’s Brontë research, but also allow undergraduate researchers to track the Brontës’ legacy in a variety of cultural contexts. Although we have focused on the Brontës in Japan for this first iteration, the project will develop in keeping with the foreign language strengths and particular research interests of subsequent generations of student researchers. We chose Zotero as the vehicle for this project because of its ability to gather, organize, and augment bibliographic metadata. Especially as compared to other citation management platforms, Zotero allows users to freely draw on and reconfigure open source bibliographic data. We set out to compile and enrich open data culled from library catalogs and catalog aggregator sources, such as OCLC’s WorldCat and the National Diet Library Search. We do so in order to create a new contact point for enriched bibliographic data which illuminates how Western literature has been transformed through translation and adaptation in non-Western contexts, and which makes information about these adaptations more broadly accessible. Our poster also outlines how Zotero functions as a pedagogical tool useful for interrogating digital scholarship methodologies. In producing this bibliography, we have been forced to grapple with how bibliographic structures fail to accommodate non-Western cultural markers. For example, our students have noticed that some adaptations’ multiple creator roles (artists, editors, directors, storyline adapters, inkers, etc.) are not reflected in “standard” bibliographic categories, and that non-Western naming conventions are often not easily represented. Together with our students, we are also engaging with Zotero as a hermeneutic device that helps us think about the organizational structures imposed by current cataloguing systems. As our research team adds bespoke tagged and relational data to our library, we see how connections among our sources enable some forms of relationship-building but delimit others. In other words, tagging is meaning-making. As we have interacted with this tool, we and our students have, by necessity, questioned the ways in which we access and compartmentalize knowledge. Our poster then summarizes our experience using a Zotero bibliography as a teaching tool, a research activity, and a mode of scholarly humanistic inquiry into digital hermeneutics. “The Brontës in the World” stands as an effort to illuminate the transmission of the Brontës’ work, but also as a meditation on data organization that, we hope, will fuel conversations in the international DH community about the affordances and limitations of current resource management infrastructure. We are happy to share how Zotero, nominally a citation management tool, has served as the foundation for both our research and pedagogy. It has allowed us to build a database that will serve researchers interested in translation and adaptation studies, and to establish a hub for ongoing student explorations of data collection and citation practice. To supplement the poster presentation, we provide an illustrated two-language (English and Japanese) handout that highlights our discoveries and future plans.
Identifier: FSU_libsubv1_scholarship_submission_1537802286_cca1b799 (IID)
Keywords: Emily Brontë, Brontë Sisters, Wuthering Heights, English Literature, Zotero, Digital Scholarship
Persistent Link to This Record:
Use and Reproduction: Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0)
Host Institution: FSU

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Pascoe, J., & Hunter, M. E. (2018). The Brontës in the World: Creating a Digital Bibliography to Expand Access to Single-Language Sources. Retrieved from