"When is a multimedia website better than a book? These are real questions we rarely address as a profession."
Cathy Davidson, in The New Education: How to Revolutionize the University to Prepare Students for a World in Flux, asks us to consider the audience and impact we imagine for our scholarship and the role its form plays in realizing those goals. To that end, I have decided that a scholarly, "public humanities" resource on sustainable farming in Indiana will reach more people--more directly, with more flexibility--as an evolving website than as a book. I am envisioning this website as "draft-y": open, ongoing, iterative, informal, accessible and on its way to more formal expression of insights by me and others. As always, I wish to offer my readers and interlocutors not only my analysis and my conclusions but also some texture of the phenomena we would consider together, a rendering that is itself a shaping, a shaping that itself conveys my conclusions for your review. I offer a sample distilled through my own critical analysis, for use through conversation on the way to claims we are ready to debate.
I hope this site will remain useful and timely. I welcome discussion.
This project was made possible by a grant from the Indiana University’s Arts and Humanities Council and the New Frontiers in the Arts & Humanities Program.