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Digital literature preservation series launches at Vancouver

VANCOUVER, Wash. – Much early digital literature can no longer be experienced because today’s technology has passed it by. A videotaping series at Washington State University Vancouver will help preserve the early literature and the human experience of interacting with it.
The first session will debut July 8-9 with Stuart Moulthrop, professor of English at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, who for the last 25 years has produced many critically significant works of digital writing and art. He will be videotaped performing and talking through one of his best-known pieces, “Victory Garden” (1991), on a vintage Mac Classic.
Following his reading, two readers unfamiliar with “Victory Garden” will be videotaped to produce a record of multiple readers’ experience with the work.
The videotaping, taking place in the electronic literature lab, is aimed at producing a performance of his work that can be archived for posterity in international databases and made available in a multimedia Web book.
Moulthrop also will present a free, public lecture at 7 p.m. Tuesday, July 9, at Nouspace Gallery, 1005 Main St., Vancouver.

The videotaping series, “Pathfinders: Documenting the Experience of Early Digital Literature,” is supported by a digital humanities start-up grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities. It is co-led by Moulthrop and Dene Grigar, associate professor and director of the creative media and digital culture program at WSU Vancouver.

Three more videotaping sessions are scheduled through the fall. To learn more or to see them online, visit
Videos will also be made available via a free application and international databases such as the Electronic Literature Directory, hosted by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and ELMCIP, hosted by the University of Bergen in Norway.

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