Hi Digital Anthropology people,
I'm co-editing a special issue journal volume called Digital Subjects, Cultural Objects (DiSCO for short!), which deals with the implications of the increasing mobilisation of digital technologies in historical, anthropological and museum-related scholarship as well as indigenous projects of cultural/economic/artistic revitalization.
I'm currently drafting the Introduction, which looks at issues of 'ontological incommensurability', as considered (very differently) within computer/information science on one hand, and by anthropologists on the other - one idea is to query whether the term 'ontology' is going to be able to do what (some) anthropologists want it to do, especially in light of its rather more prevalent usage in discussions about resolving/overcoming incommensurabilities among database ontologies (which are of course becoming increasingly pressing with the advent of the Semantic Web).
Other themes are explored as well, but the main point of this post is to ask for your advice and feedback on my latest draft, should any of you be so-inclined (all assistance will of course be gratefully acknowledged). This is still a work in progress, so I would particularly welcome recommended readings etc. (The following books/articles are on my desk, but haven't yet made it into the paper: Landzelius Native on the Net: Indigenous and diasporic peoples in the virtual age (2006); Dyson, Henriks & Grant Information technology and indigenous peoples (2007) and Cameron & Kenderdine, Theorizing digital cultural heritage (2003). I have also just discovered the brilliant Casper Bruun Jensen, whose 'Asymmetries of Knowledge: mediated ethnography and ICT for development' (2010) and other writings on 'practical ontology' will certainly feature in the final piece).
Thanks! I look forward to hearing from you.