The Dawn of a New Era: The Digital Orientalist, 2020-2021

Last year was an interesting and exciting year for the Digital Orientalist: we affiliated with the American Oriental Society, we continued to grow our readership, and we welcomed editors from the fields of Indian Studies and Syriac Studies into our team.

The coming year is also shaping up to be quite exciting! Following our Call for Editors and Contributors earlier this summer, we have radically expanded the size of our team. This will allow us to publish two contributions each week.

Today we are pleased to be able to announce the Digital Orientalist’s team for the academic year 2020-2021!

The Team for Academic Year 2020-2021

Returning Members

The founder and owner of the Digital Orientalist, Cornelis van Lit, will continue in his role as owner of the magazine. He will also make some irregular contributions and aid in the work of professionalizing the magazine as it continues to grow.

James Harry Morris will continue in his role as Editor-in-Chief and will continue to make contributions related to Japanology.

Deniz Çevik will continue in her role as Social Media Manager and is likely to make some irregular contributions over the coming year.

Alex Mallett resumes his work as our Editor for Islamic Studies. Amongst Mallet’s contributions “Some Thoughts about Arabic-Script OCR” and “Review: Among Digitized Manuscripts by L.W.C. van Lit (Leiden: Brill, 2020)” were particularly popular during the last academic year.

Ephrem Ishac continues in his role as our Editor for Syriac Studies. We will be publishing new parts of his popular interview with George Kiraz from early September, 2020.

Charles Riley returns for his third term as our Editor of African Studies. Last year, Riley’s “Keeping up with Coptic” was particularly popular.

New Members

Fatma Aladağ, a PhD Candidate at Leipzig University, will serve as our Editor for Ottoman Studies. Her research focuses on the Ottoman Empire and Ottoman citites in the 16th century, Digital Urban Studies, and Geographic Information Systems.

Daigengna Duoer, a PhD Candidate at the University for California, Santa Barbara, joins us as our first Editor of Mongolian Studies. Her research focuses on transnational and transregional Buddhist networks connecting early twentieth-century Inner Mongolia, Manchuria, Mongolia, Tibet, Republican China, and Imperial Japan.

Julie A. Hanlon (University of Chicago) will take over as our Editor for Indian Studies. Her recent research examines the materiality of Tamil texts and inscriptions, and the ways in which the preservation, destruction, and reuse of literature and landscape figured in the formation and negotiation of religious identities during the first millennium.

Matthew Hayes (University of California, Los Angeles) will serve as our first Editor for Buddhist Studies. His research focuses on ritual practice in early modern Japan and its intersection with knowledge production, learning, patronage, and social formations.

Sarah Ketchley (University of Washington) joins us as our inaugural Editor for DH in Practice. Ketchley is an Egyptologist and art historian. Readers may be familiar with Ketchley’s numerous digital humanities projects including the Emma B. Andrews Diary Project and Newbook Digital Texts.

Elizabeth Lee, a PhD Candidate at New York University, will serve as our first Editor for Korean Studies. Lee’s research examines the role of rock-carved images of the Buddha within the spatial narratives and ritual practices of Koryŏ period (918-1392 CE) Buddhism.

Shiva Mihan (Harvard Art Museums) will join us as a Contributor for Iranian Studies. Mihan’s expertise are in manuscript production and patronage from the 14th to the 19th century in Greater Iran. As the Schroeder Curatorial Fellow of Islamic Art at Harvard Art Museums she catalogues and carries out research on collections of Islamic Art.

Adrian Plau (Wellcome Collection) will serve as Contributor for Indian Studies. Plau is Manuscript Collections Information Analyst at Wellcome Collection, London, where he works on making Wellcome’s global manuscript collections more accessible.

Maddalena Poli, a PhD Candidate at the University of Pennsylvania, joins us as Contributor for Sinology. Poli’s research explores manuscript culture in early China (5th –2nd century BCE). She primarily works with bamboo and silk manuscripts from the fourth and third century BCE.

Jonathan Robker (University of Münster) joins us as our inaugural Editor for Biblical Studies. His research focuses on diachronic aspects of biblical literature, particular in the distinct traditions of the Hebrew/Aramaic and Greek versions. Readers may be familiar with his recent monograph Balaam in Text and Tradition.

Claudia Simonelli (Ca’ Foscari University of Venice) will serve as Contributor for Syriac Studies. Simonelli currently works as a Digital Humanist in the ERC project FLOS, within which she is specializing in Syriac digital philology, codicology and palaeography.

Lu Wang, a PhD Candidate at Western University, joins us as Contributor for Sinology. Her research focuses on Chinese visual and material culture in the late imperial period. She is also interested in the application of digital research methods to Chinese studies.

Ahmet Yusuf Yuksek, a PhD Candidate at New York University, will serve as Contributor for Ottoman Studies. His research interests include the religio-political and social history of the Ottoman Empire, and more specifically, the trans-imperial networks of Sufism in the context of the eighteenth century.

Mariana Zorkina, a PhD Candidate at Zurich University, joins us as Editor for Sinology. Her research focuses on medieval Chinese poetry and, more specifically, on language patterns surrounding the poetic imagery. She previously served as Editor-in-Chief of Sysblok.

The team once more:

Closing Thoughts

This year the Digital Orientalist will continue to expand and diversify. We hope to be able to bring our readers new content in a number of new fields and to expand our content in the areas that we have traditionally focused on including Middle Eastern Studies, East Asian Studies, and Indian Studies. The Digitial Orientalist‘s managerial team (Van Lit, Morris, and Çevik) are exploring various avenues for expansion and professionalization, and we look forward to bringing you more news on these matters when we can. We hope that everyone is as excited as we are for the new academic year! If there is anything that you would like to see, please do not hesitate to reach out to us!

If you would like to learn more about the new team, you can view information about each member through our new Editorial Team page.

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