The Early Modern Center ("EMC") at UCSB mobilizes the English department's strength in sixteenth- through eighteenth-century studies, which is maintained by seven faculty members in the field. The EMC has created a specially-constructed space (consisting of a seminar area, resource library, and networked computers) that promotes collaborative research and teaching. The EMC also creates graduate and undergraduate courses around innovative annual themes; organizes colloquia and conferences; supervises the department's undergraduate specialization in Early Modern Studies; and offers a graduate student assistantship each year. The EMC also hosts several groundbreaking digital humanities initiatives. The English Broadside Ballad Archive ("EBBA") digitizes, transcribes, and catalogues the images from extant early modern ballad collections in order to improve scholarly and public access. To date, EBBA has received four National Endowment for the Humanities grants and has transcribed more than seventy-five percent of surviving seventeenth-century ballads. The Early Modern British Theater Archive ("EMBTA"), meanwhile, assembles and digitizes multimedia resources relating to the history of early modern British theater and dramatic literature. Finally, the EMC is in the process of creating an online publishing platform, the emcIMPRINT, to offer an innovative open access venue for scholarly work. Graduate students from the EMC are involved at a number of levels with these digital humanities projects.
This Year's EMC Events
Current Projects at the EMC
The English Broadside Ballad Archive (EBBA) makes 17th-century broadside ballads accessible as text, art, music, and cultural records. To date the archive includes over 5,000 ballads--more than half of the estimated 10,000 extant 17th-century ballads. EBBA's holdings are free and open to the public.
*This Winter, graduate students in Patricia Fumerton's "Popular Print and Ballad Culture" seminar are participating in a series of hands-on projects:
- Making paper at the UCSB Art Studio
- Working a Printing Press at UC Riverside
- Handling original broadside ballads and woodcuts at the Huntington Library
The emcIMPRINT is an innovative open access venue for scholarly work and communication. We would like to combine 4 virtues of our print media inheritance:
with four virtues of new computable media:
- Patient and rigorous care with writing, anonymous peer-review, editing & publishing
- Meet exacting standards of correctness
- A publication event of all-at-once presentation to the public
- A permanence that equals or approaches that of a printed product
Examples of early publications under the emcIMPRINT
- The speed, cheapness, and global reach of Internet publication
- By exploiting the plasticity of a computer-enabled interface, we could enjoy to the productive integration of traditionally separate functions of writing, editing & design
- Incorporation of text,image, sound, video, database, etc. to become multimedia
- The final transmission of the publication to reader could benefit from earlier format and design decisions
The Early Modern British Theater Archive assembles and digitizes multimedia resources relating to the history of British theater and dramatic literature during the period 1500-1800, our goal being to help students understand early modern theater as a multisensorial and collaborative art form. EMBTA is unique in that most archives on English drama either begin or end with the mid-17th-century closure of theaters by Puritan officials during Englandís Civil Wars, and while post-1660 theater was in many ways radically different from the theater of Shakespeare, this archive aims to make apparent both the continuities and innovations in British theater over these three centuries.
The Early Modern Center Gallery is a featured resource of the center, containing reproductions of many important period images in thumbnail, browser, and large high-quality sizes. A random image from the Gallery is sampled below.
|Henry VIII. Horenbout, Lucas, c. 1526. Watercolor on vellum on card53 x 48 mmRectangularFitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge|