"The definitive introductory guide. . . . In an online world marked by evanescence, this book will long remain a vade mecum for dedicated amateurs and professionals."—Choice
"This is an important book that fills an important niche: a careful and comprehensive report to the field on the development and possibilities of online history, enhanced by a thoughtful set of conceptual and technical recommendations for novice online historians showing them how they might go about launching, sustaining, and preserving an online digital history project. The team that produced this manuscript at the Center for History and New Media is arguably the most advanced group working on digital history in the United States today."—Stephen Brier, The Graduate Center, CUNYSelected by Choice magazine as an Outstanding Academic Title
Digital History: A Guide to Gathering, Preserving, and Presenting the Past on the Web provides for the first time a plainspoken and thorough introduction to the web for historians—teachers and students, archivists and museum curators, professors as well as amateur enthusiasts—who wish to produce online historical work or to build upon and improve the projects they have already started in this important new medium.
The book takes the reader step by step through planning a project, understanding the technologies involved and how to choose the appropriate ones, designing a site that is both easy to use and scholarly, digitizing materials in a way that makes them web-friendly while preserving their historical integrity, and reaching and responding to an intended audience effectively. It also explores the repercussions of copyright law and fair use for scholars in a digital age and examines more cutting-edge web techniques involving interactivity, such as sites that use the medium to solicit and collect historical artifacts. Finally, the book provides basic guidance for ensuring that the digital history the reader creates will not disappear in a few years. Throughout, Digital History maintains a realistic sense of the advantages and disadvantages of putting historical documents, interpretations, and discussions online.
The authors write in a tone that makes Digital History accessible to those with little knowledge of computers, while including a host of details that more technically savvy readers will find helpful. And although the book focuses particularly on historians, those working in related fields in the humanities and social sciences will also find this to be a useful introduction. Digital History builds upon more than a decade of experience and expertise in creating pioneering and award-winning work by the Center for History and New Media at George Mason University.
Daniel J. Cohen is Director of Research Projects at the Center for History and New Media and Assistant Professor of History at George Mason University. Roy Rosenzweig is the founder and Director of CHNM and Mark and Barbara Fried Professor of History and New Media at George Mason University. He is coauthor, with David Thelen, of The Presence of the Past: Popular Uses of History in American Life.