The Total Archive: Dreams of Universal Knowledge from the Encyclopaedia to Big Data. (360G-Wellcome-107416_Z_15_Z)
The conference 'The Total Archive' and associated special issue of the journal LIMN deals with schemes for universal knowledge, from mass bio-sample collection and global demography to representations of totalities in film, fiction and visual art. The conference seeks to interrogate the practices of Big Data and the identity politics of sciences with grand explanatory claims, for example modern genomics. The conference takes place on March 19/20, 2015, at the Centre for Research in the Arts, Hum anities and Social Sciences (CRASSH), University of Cambridge. In addition to the urgent need to contextualise Big Data (see: http://www.mpiwg-berlin.mpg.de/en/research/projects/DeptII_Aronova_Oertzen_Sepkoski_Historicizing), the conference is timely because of the increasing use of large data-sets and aspirations to totality in the humanities themselves. For example CRASSH's own 'Visual Representations of the Third Plague Pandemic' is one such project represented at the conference. Theme s of mass data collection are also important outside the academy, and so the conference will feature a public lecture (by the literary theorist Katherine Hayles), and essays will be published in the popular open access journal LIMN (www.limn.it), which has agreed in principle to run a special issue on the topic.
£2,800 30 Jan 2015