Flagship Digital Humanities project collates The Complete Works of Evelyn Waugh

Posted by pt91 at Jul 23, 2013 11:08 AM |
Research in the School of English awarded over £800,000 for new project

Professor Martin Stannard from our School of English has been awarded a grant of £822,482 from the Arts & Humanities Research Council for The Complete Works of Evelyn Waugh (Oxford University Press, 42 vols), the first such collection of Waugh’s work that will include published literature and Personal Writings. Only around 15% of Waugh’s letters are in print, but the Complete Works will publish them all in eight volumes.

The project will use cutting-edge Digital Humanities technology, including the development of a website that stores research texts and acts as a portal to the Oxford University Press’s database of the Personal Writings. The site will also be a repository of the primary texts and journalism, all in a searchable format. The 23 editors will be able to use the site as a huge virtual seminar, enabling collaborative work and the continuous sharing of ideas.

With the main archives being held in Texas, Leeds, London and Somerset, gaining an overview of Waugh’s writing is complex and labour-intensive. By digitising everything Waugh wrote and storing it online it will be possible to view everything from any location. Once the database and repository are complete, the resource will enable researchers to perform online searches and to share ideas with each other and members of the public.

The use of Digital Humanities will keep the project in the public eye: a public-facing section of the website, regular events, a Twitter feed, Facebook page and podcasting will encourage widespread engagement. By involving the public it is hoped that the project team will be able to uncover missing manuscripts, personal letters and records of meetings with Waugh, building a near- complete historical context of his writings.

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