Following up their back-to-back exhibits at the Modern Language Association, ELO Vice President Dene Grigar and Kathi Inman Berens are bringing electronic literature to another hallowed venue that was formerly the primary proving grounds of print matter: the U.S. Library of Congress.
Running April 3-5, the exhibit, “Electronic Literature & Its Emerging Forms,” part of the “Electronic Literature Showcase,” features 27 works of electronic literature––dating from 1982 – 2013––by American authors, relevant printed works from the Library of Congress collections, readings by select authors featured in the exhibit and hands-on workshops for visitors.
Along with the exhibit, the Library of Congress’s “Electronic Literature Showcase” includes an exhibit of rare books; a keynote address by ELO board member Stuart Moulthrop, panel discussion about electronic literature’s connection to major areas of knowledge and creativity featuring Berens; Grigar; Matthew Kirschenbaum, associate director of the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities; and Nick Montfort, current President of the Electronic Literature Organization. As a sign of her dedication to training future e-lit scholars, Grigar has also continued to draw and train student docents from her home institution, Washington State University-Vancouver (WSUV). All events are free and open to the public.
From the WSUV announcement:
Generally defined as a “digital born” literary work, electronic literature is a “first-generation digital object created on a computer and (usually) meant to be read on a computer.” In a world dominated today by smart phones and tablets, the term computer has come to include any computing device. The electronic literature featured in the exhibit has been produced by major American artists and influential pioneers working in any language, and reflects a broad spectrum of genres and approaches, e.g. kinetic poetry, hypertext fiction, animated graphic novels and augmented reality environments. These works will be displayed on iMacs, iPads, vintage Macintosh computers, and vintage Atari game systems.
This exhibit of electronic literature is the Library of Congress’s first. It was made possible by digital humanist Susan Garfinkel, research specialist with the Digital Reference Section, CALM Division, at the Library of Congress, as well as colleagues in her department and at the Library.
For more information about the exhibit, contact Grigar, dgrigar at vancouver.wsu.edu, or visit the exhibit website at http://dtc-wsuv.org/elit/elit-loc/. For information about the Electronic Literature Showcase, contact Susan Garfinkel, elit at loc.gov, or visit the website at http://www.loc.gov/rr/program/elit-showcase.html.
Follow the event on Twitter @eLitatLOC and hashtag #elitloc, as WSUV student Evan Flanagan directs the social media for the event.