Still Life in Digital

Black Life, Trauma, and Social Media

Media concretizes the social…


Haunting, Virtuality, and Other Archival Materialities

By Marisa Parham

The problem of describing the place where social media content originates can be productively understood as parallel to complex matters of ownership and participation in African American culture. Riding the instability between “to,” “from,” or “for” is also a way of characterizing the haunted nature of Black life—as a way of articulating what it means to experience other people’s memories with the affective impact of personal, firsthand experience. Much as we often use the word ‘ghost’ as a catchall for that which is generated in the breaks between the evidential and ephemeral, thinking about haunting as a kind of digital experience helps us get at the circulation of memory, pain, and affect on social media platforms. (more…)


On Seeing through Twitter

By Jeffrey Moro


In particular, we’ve been thinking about data visualization: how the graph, map, tree, or chart has gained prominence in the way we talk, write, and share online, and its role in making violence towards Black life constantly visible and explicable in ways that are both necessary and deleterious. It’s been my job over the past month to learn more about techniques for data visualization, how to turn corpuses of data, especially tweets, into compelling visual representations, and to think about what that process of representation entails.

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Marisa Parham

Marisa Parham

Professor of English, Amherst College View Details
Jeffrey Moro

Jeffrey Moro

Post-Baccalaureate Resident, Five College Digital Humanities View Details
Marisa Parham

Marisa Parham

Professor of English, Amherst College

Marisa Parham is Professor of English at Amherst College, and also directs the Five College Digital Humanities Initiative, which focuses both on helping artists and scholars to integrate technology into humanities scholarship and creative work, and also to bring those disciplines to influence technological growth and spread.

Her current teaching and research projects focus on texts that problematize assumptions about time, space, and bodily materiality, particularly as such terms share a history of increasing complexity in texts produced by African Americans. She holds a PhD in English and Comparative Literature from Columbia University, and is the author of Haunting and Displacement in African-American Literature and Culture, as well as The African-American Student’s Guide to College. She formerly served on the Board of Directors for the Amherst Cinema Arts Center, and in 2005 was a fellow at the W.E.B. Du Bois Research Institute at Harvard University, and in 2014 a Huntington Library fellow.

Jeffrey Moro

Jeffrey Moro

Post-Baccalaureate Resident, Five College Digital Humanities

Jeffrey Moro is a researcher and artist with Five College Digital Humanities, a Mellon-funded program in the Five College Consortium of Western Massachusetts. He wears many different hats at 5CollDH, including running a fellowship and microgrant program, consulting on and assisting with grant-funded projects, managing a speaker series, teaching classes and workshops, and creating digital resources. In his research, he works on electronic literature, interactive and games, software studies, and the history of media forms and technologies. Current projects include E.LIT / NET.ART, The Recirculator, and The_Critical_Is, which was a recipient of a microgrant from the Association for Computers and the Humanities. He holds a BA in English and Theater & Dance from Amherst College.