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Are you sure we're not in Kansas anymore Dorothy? Domain Knowledge and DH

It is a truism to say that digital technology is changing the humanities. In the classroom we are told to adapt ourselves to the new ways our students organise and communicate knowledge. In our research, we have far greater access than ever before to secondary literature, facsimiles of primary material, and even work-in-progress. The newest digital archives, editions, and research sites use technology that many traditionally-trained humanities scholars confess to finding extremely intimidating.

This paper looks at the role of domain knowledge and expertise in the Digital Humanities. What do traditionally trained humanities scholars need to know about technology? What do their skills and training contribute to the successful digital project? As the use of digital technology in the humanities becomes mainstream, we need to ensure that domain knowledge and skills in the humanities are properly captured and communicated. In fact, doing so also makes good technological sense: if the last ten years have demonstrated anything, it is that some of our most important technologies have arisen in response to questions and research by traditionally-trained humanities scholars.