Aligarh: Dr Astrid Ensslin from the Norway’s University of Bergen, delved into digital culture and digital humanities—exemplifying how literary expression in digital-born media exceeds and subverts traditional notions of literature.
She was speaking as the foreign faculty of the week-long Global Initiative for Academic Networks course on ‘Digital Literatures and Literatures in the Digital’ of the Department of English, Aligarh Muslim University.
Dr Astrid focused on digital-born fictions and poetry, literary games, pre-web e-literature, medium-specific narratology and multimodal analysis, feminist and applied approaches to e-literature, digital-born bibliotherapy and e-literature curatorship among other topics.
She explained various aspects of digital humanities and new literary practices in different sessions of the course.
“There is so much digital literature out there, and from a wide selection of genres. It is an ever-growing field that moves with new technological advances. Writers are taking full advantage of the computer’s possibilities, utilising new technologies to broach complex subject matter”, Dr Astrid pointed out.
Speaking on ‘Framing Electronic Literature through an African Lens: Ghanaian Perspectives’, Dr Kwabena-Opoku Agyemang, from the University of Ghana, shed light on how African literature is incorporating digital technology into its creative process, and with electronic literary criticism focusing on areas outside its predominantly western cannon.
He gave examples of concrete poetry, conceptual poetry, and mobile video games from Ghana that shape African electronic literature.
Prof Saugata Bhaduri, from Jawaharlal Nehru University of New Delhi, delivered a talk on ‘Of Doigts and Droits: Whose (or which) Digit is it Anyway?’
The course also featured useful lectures by Prof Syed Mohammad Hashim, Former Dean, Faculty of Arts, Prof Mohammad Jahangeer Warsi, Local Coordinator, GIAN Courses-AMU and Chairman, Department of Linguistics, Prof Asim Siddiqui, Chairman, Department of English, Prof M Rizwan Khan and Prof Seemin Hasan on the aspects of setting up digital literature courses and expanding its scope in India.
Prof Claire Joubert, from University Paris VIII, discussed the necessity of evolving discourse on digital humanities.
Prof Mohammad Jahangeer Warsi delivered the closing remarks and Madiha Noman extended the vote of thanks.
Dr Sharjeel Chaudhry and Alisha Ibkar conducted the programme, while Dr Adiba Faiyaz presented the feedback of over 200 participants from 70 different institutions.