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The Future of History – A presentation by Dan Cohen

Dan Cohen is Director of the Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media at George Mason University. His research is in European and American intellectual history, the history of science (particularly mathematics), and the intersection of history and computing. Professor Cohen is co-author (with the late Dr. Roy Rosenzweig) of Digital History: A Guide to Gathering, Preserving, and Presenting the Past on the Web (2005), author of Equations from God: Pure Mathematics and Victorian Faith (2007), and has published articles and book chapters on the history of mathematics and religion, the teaching of history, and the future of history in a digital age. He blogs on Digital Humanities. Organized by the Digital Humanities 2.0 collaborative; cosponsored by the Immigration History Research Center, the Department of English, the Department of Writing Studies, and University Libraries.

This talk is also available as an audio download (.mp3 – 51.5 MB) or as a video podcast (.m4v – 142.0 MB).

What happens when the historical record is digitized, and when the events of the present are recorded only in electronic formats? Although the potential for loss exists–we are unsure whether we can preserve today’s documents for future generations–new possibilities for research and teaching are beginning to emerge. This talk explores the promise and perils of a new era of history based on computers and networks, including vast digital libraries and archives, tools for saving and communicating history, and what the coming decade will hold.

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