Horizons: H-Net Newsletter, 2:3

H-Net Humanities and Social Sciences OnlinesVolume 2 • Number 3 • October 2015

Fall is officially upon us and so is the latest edition of H-Net's occasional newsletter. It is chock-full of content by our resourceful editors and contributors and will point all but the most dedicated readers to as-yet-unexplored corners of the H-Net Commons. This month we are rolling out a brand new network, H-Podcast, and a new service, the H-Net Book Channel. We hope that readers will subscribe to explore all that the Commons has to offer: dip into new networks, browse recent reviews, and be inspired to join in discussions with fellow scholars, students, and other professionals working to advance the humanities and social sciences. And finally, we hope that editors will be moved to run for positions to shape the future of H-Net and all active editors will cast their votes on November 12, 13, and 14.

--Yelena Kalinsky, Associate Director for Reviews

Wayback projects: Mining the H-Net logs

Did you know that you can use the H-Net discussion logs to go back through two decades of conversations? It's one of H-Net's richest resources. A number of networks have gone through their archives to highlight some of the most topical and enduring threads. H-Africa has organized many of its archived discussion threads from as far back as 1995 into dozens of topics, like Afrocentricityteaching, and (appropriately) Africa and the internet.  H-Slavery has showcased a more focused Wayback project by collating over 50 response to a query about defining slavery from 2005. Is there a thread that still sticks out in your mind? Let the H-Net staff know and we can help you share on your network's front page.


H-Podcast & The Art of the Review are live

H-Podcast, the new network about podcasting as form and tool for teaching and scholarship is now live. The editors invite discussions about any aspect of podcasting, resources & tips about the creative or technical sides of podcasting, and links to podcasts of interest. A new podcast out of the Reviews office called The Art of the Review posts new episodes every Monday. Check it out and let us know what you think!


Around the Commons

H-Afro-Am has been considering the scholarly community's response to the McGraw-Hill textbook "error." H-Amstdy and H-Slavery have picked up the conversation on their own networks.

H-Nationalism's monthly series on Secessionism and Separatism kicks off with a post by Alexandar Pavkovic (Associate Professor, Macquarie University, Sydney).

H-War seeks sources on the practice of taking down statues and how societies remake memorialization in public space.

H-PCAACA editor Daniel Fandino says farewell to Saturday morning cartoons.

New book discovery service: H-Net Book Channel

The long-awaited H-Net Book Channel is live! Instructors, graduate students, and scholars can now use the site to stay on top of the literature in their fields, and starting this spring, read topical essays from scholars who put new academic publications and trends in perspective. Interested authors can read more here. Publishers who would like to have their newest titles announced can learn more here. And finally, we are pleased to announce our first sponsor, Oxford University Press.


Featured staff: Doug Priest, Content Developer

As always, we thank our hard working home office staff, who answer your phone calls and emails, build custom layouts for networks, and make the Commons more useful and easier to use every day. We'll be using this space to spotlighting their achievements and contributions.


  1. What is your current position and what do you do at H-Net?  I am a PhD student in the History Department at Michigan State University and a Graduate Assistant at H-Net this semester. But I've actually been at H-Net since 2010. I was here when we first conceived the transition from listserv to the new platform, which turned into building the H-Net Commons. Now that it's live, I work on developing new features, help editors at a lot of different networks to use the Commons to build the kind of projects they want to build, and since March 2015, I'm also a network editor myself at H-Russia and H-Grad.
  2. Tell us about your dissertation.  I study the Soviet Union, and my dissertation is on the Bolshoi Ballet from 1917 to 1934. I'm particularly interested in the history of bodies and movement, so I'm looking at ballet and dance from that perspective. I also focus on debates surrounding ballet and movement in early Soviet Russian and how these debates shaped the ballets that were produced at the Bolshoi in that period. I'm interested in placing the history of the early Bolshoi Ballet in the larger history of early Soviet culture, how this historically aristocratic artform collided with an explicitly socialist ideology. While my dissertation doesn't have a digital component, working at H-Net I see how much the digital humanities help to bridge different disciplines, which is very similar to what I try to do by combining historical and dance studies methodologies.
  3. What are some of the projects you have worked on at H-Net?  Just about everything! More recently, I've been working with Jesse Draper on building the new editor training program and with Yelena Kalinsky and everyone at the home office on the conception and creation of the new H-Net Book Channel. I have a background in computer science and have learned Drupal since working at H-Net. Having that background and knowledge means that I can help develop and shape what we can do on Commons.
  4. Which H-Net Networks do you follow or edit?  I already mentioned editing H-Grad and H-Russia. I also follow H-Digital-History and H-EdTech. I'm really interested in the ways that digital humanities and digital history can reach different academic audiences, non-academic audiences, particularly EdTech, which deals with questions of how technology can be used in education.
  5. Any other thoughts you want to share?  I'm not just intellectual interested in dance, I also dance myself. I regularly participate in the local dance community, including dancing and choreographing for Dance Lansing and Velocity Concert Dance (formerly HappenDance). If there were an H-Dance, I would gladly edit it.