Sunday, May 28, 2017

The Jay Z Dataset--presentation at the University of Notre Dame

By Kenton Rambsy and Howard Rambsy II

On May 26 & 27, we participated in the Cultural Analytics 2017 – “a two-day symposium devoted to new research in the fields of computational and data-intensive cultural studies.” The symposium brought together scholars doing work in humanities, computer science, and quantitative social sciences.

In addition to listening to the various presentations, we shared our ongoing Af-Am/DH work. Here’s a description of our presentation:

The Jay Z Dataset
Over the years, we have collaborated on projects that seek to address the divide between digital humanities and African American literary studies. We gathered quantitative data from a variety of sources in order to build and explore large bodies of artistic compositions by black writers and performers. One result was the development of our "Jay Z Dataset," a collection of information on the rap artist, including the lyrics from 189 songs comprising his 12 solo albums. For our presentation, we will discuss some of the main components of our dataset as well as activities for students that have emerged from the project. In addition, we will highlight the ways that building this Jay Z dataset has strengthened our abilities to address challenges and opportunities concerning the relationships between DH and African American literary studies. Overall, our presentation addresses the idea of integrating computational methods in hip hop studies and more broadly, highlighting the promise of thinking about Black Studies data projects as a way of addressing a challenging set of problems in the fields.
Here are a few write-ups about the conference:

Condensed version of the Jay Z Dataset presentation
Visualizing the Length of Jay Z's music
Ted Underwood on Bestsellers 
Marit MacArthur, poetry, and sound studies 
Dispatches from Cultural Analytics symposium
Urbanization and African American fiction (Notes on Matthew Wilkens presentation)

A Notebook on Jay Z

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