William G. Thomas
- University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Railroads and the Making of Modern America
This project explores the social consequences of railroad growth in mid-nineteenth-century America. The fundamental concern of this work is an examination and representation of the national development of the railroad network across space and over time and its multivalent effects on American communities. The central humanities question in this study is understanding the complex social consequences of railroad development across the nineteenth century, through the documentation, representation, and visualization of how Americans experienced these transformative modern developments. The significant outcome of the project is the largest historical database of railroad and social change available over the web for wide access and use in research and teaching.
New Storytellers: The Research Institute in Digital Ethnic Studies, Developing Racial, Ethnic, and Cultural Diversity in the Next Generation of Digital Scholars
New Storytellers: The Research Institute in Digital Ethnic Studies, a two-week immersive workshop, brings together scholars from Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs), faculty and staff at the University of Nebraska, and guest presenters from other universities who collectively are deeply invested in using digital technologies to explore race, ethnicity, and social justice. New Storytellers intervenes in the field of digital humanities by broadening the participation and inclusion of underrepresented groups, bringing their voices into the conversation and engaging them with computational and new media tools to expand, recalibrate, and extend the impact of interdisciplinary work on race and ethnicity. The team’s experience gained through nearly fifteen years of hosting the Nebraska Forum on Digital Humanities, nearly five decades of research and teaching in Nebraska's Institute for Ethnic Studies, and extensive engagement with faculty members at minority-serving institutions informs the approach.