Despite its growing popularity, there is a noticeable absence of references to the inclusion of genealogy and family history studies within the field of digital humanities. New forms of inclusiveness, particularly in production-coding and cultural analysis, closely align genealogy and family history with the core tenants practiced among humanities computing and digital humanities. This paper aims to prove that genealogy as family history should be formally recognized within this cohort, as it can serve as a valuable and innovative partner for advocacy and technological advancement of the field.
By examining the literature, genealogy will be defined according to its use in the digital humanities, as well as its use in family history studies. The core tenants of humanities computing and digital humanities will be identified and compared against the research methodology and technological tools used in genealogy and family history research. The comparison will determine how closely the fields align, and if genealogy defined as family history should be used, and included within the field of digital humanities.
The progression of genealogy and family history from production to cultural analysis corresponds with the transition of production and coding (influenced by humanities computing) to the inclusion of experimental cultural research adopted by the digital humanities. Genealogy’s use of technological tools, such as databases, text encoding, data-text mining, graphic information systems and DNA mapping, demonstrates the use of coding and production. Cultural analysis through demographic study, crowdsourcing and establishing cultural connections illustrates new methods of scholarship, and connects coding and cultural criticism, serving as a bridge between digital humanities and the humanities at large. As genealogy continues to create new partnerships of a collaborative nature, it can, and will, continue to contribute to new areas of study within the field. As these practices continue to converge with the digital humanities, genealogy should be recognized as a partner and member in the digital humanities cohort.
Despite its growing popularity, there is a noticeable absence of references to the inclusion of genealogy and family history studies within the field of the digital humanities. The term genealogy resonates differently within the digital humanities, primarily articulating the history of the field over the study and research of family lineage. This study seeks to demonstrate how genealogy and family history can fit within the digital humanities, providing a new perspective that has not yet been articulated in the scholarly literature.
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