Digital Studies Center to Host Festival of Digital Language Art


By Tom McLaughlin

The Digital Studies Center at Rutgers University–Camden invites participants to a free, public conference delving into the world of digital language art – an emerging field that explores the interactions between texts produced in conjunction with other media, including visual art, sound art, games, installation art, video, and live performance.

“U R Here: A Festival of Digital Language Art” will be held from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Friday, Nov. 3, and from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 4, at the Writers House at Rutgers–Camden, located at 305 Cooper Street on the Rutgers–Camden campus.

Via a series of hands-on workshops, conference participants will gain concrete skills, and gather language materials, resources and concepts in order to begin, advance, or energize digital writing projects.

According to the organizers, the workshops imagine digital environments as writing contexts, and use writing to ask questions about cultural institutions and systems.

“We are exploring digital writing contexts as active spaces, and we come to better understand those spaces by writing, thinking, and thinking through writing,” says Claire Donato, an author and 2016-2017 Digital Studies Fellow at Rutgers–Camden.

Author and 2017-2018 Digital Studies Fellow Jeff Johnson agreed, noting “Any digital writing project is an investigation of material and cultural affordances and constraints, so we can actively explore those stakes as we write and make our projects.”

Among the sessions offered, the “New Defaults” workshop will teach participants how to generate and tweak unique filler text that “has a little more je ne sais quoi” than the commonly used Lorem Ipsum text. Participants in the “Machine Poetics” workshop will explore how to collaborate with machines and one another to create an algorithmic poetry generator.

For more information or to register, visit

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