Doing Black Digital Humanities with Radical Intentionality : A Practical Guide book cover
1st Edition

Doing Black Digital Humanities with Radical Intentionality
A Practical Guide

  • Available for pre-order on April 21, 2023. Item will ship after May 12, 2023
ISBN 9781032287232
May 12, 2023 Forthcoming by Routledge
160 Pages 8 B/W Illustrations

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Book Description

Based on the auto-ethnographic work of a team of scholars who developed the first major Black Digital Humanities program at a research institution, this book details how to centralize Black feminist praxes of care, ethics, and Black studies in the digital humanities with Radical Intentionality.

In this important and timely collection, the authors Catherine Knight Steele, Jessica H. Lu, and Kevin C. Winstead - the first team of the African American Digital Humanities Initiative - center Black scholars, Black thought, and Black studies in creating digital research and programming. Providing insight into acquiring funding, building and maintaining community, developing curricula, and establishing a national network in the field, this book moves Black persons and Black thought from the margins to the center with a set of best practices and guiding questions for scholars, students, and practitioners developing programming, creating work agreements, building radically intentional pedagogy and establishing an ethical future for Black digital humanities.

This is essential reading for researchers, students, scholars, and practitioners working in the fields of digital humanities and Black studies, as well as graduate students, faculty, and administrators working in humanities disciplines who are interested in forming centers, courses, and/or research programs in Black digital studies.

Table of Contents

Introduction. Intentionally Digital, Intentionally Black  1. I Don’t Love DH; I Love Black Folks: Building Black DH Programming  2. Where Are All the Black Scholars in Black DH?: Creating Space for the Field of Black Digital Studies Kevin Winstead  3. What Are We Going to Eat?: Care and Feeding as Radical Method and Praxis Catherine Knight Steele  4. If You Teach it, They Will Come: Developing Pedagogy for Black DH Jessica H. Lu  5. When and How to Walk Away

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Catherine Knight Steele is an Associate Professor of Communication at the University of Maryland College Park where she directs the Black Communication and Technology Lab. Catherine’s first book Digital Black Feminism won the 2022 Nancy Baym Book Award for the Association of Internet Research and the Diamond Anniversary Book Award for the National Communication Association. Her research focuses on Black discursive practices online, digital humanities, and the intersections of race, gender, and media.

Jessica H. Lu is the Interim Director of the Design Cultures & Creativity program in the Honors College and the University of Maryland, where she earned her Ph.D. in Communication. She studies how endangered communities utilize and innovate language to disrupt racist logics and imagine just worlds. As a teacher, she focuses on care-centered pedagogy for the digitally inclined and curious.

Kevin C. Winstead is a Postdoctoral Research Fellow with the Project on Rhetorics of Equity, Access, Computation, and Humanities (PREACH) within the School of Literature, Media, and Communication at Georgia Institute of Technology. He earned his Ph.D. in American Studies at the University of Maryland. His research focuses on Black social movements and online, transglobal disinformation. He is currently working on his forthcoming manuscript, Sankofa Cyberculture: Black Digital Activism and Disinformation.


In just a few well-crafted chapters, the authors masterfully articulate a Black technocultural praxis through a centering of Black everyday life as the essence of the digital humanities. Orienting digital humanities to prioritize culture over tool use is a phenomenal recalibration of an overwhelmingly technical field, but Steele, Lu, and Winstead also present Black life as a source of theoretical reflection on itself.  Taken as a whole, this book does much to enrich the futuristic and archival possibilities for Black culture that digital humanities has always promised but rarely delivered. An extraordinary work.
- André Brock author of Distributed Blackness

Attending to an ethics of institution building grounded in love for Black communities, and calling for an intentional critique of digital tools and technologies, this book is a gift, an offering, and a treasure. Radical Intentionality is essential reading in the fields of Digital Humanities and  Ethnic Studies and for those invested in creating change within higher education. - P. Gabrielle Foreman Founding Director, The Colored Conventions Project