CTSDH Launches Humanities Datebook
The Center for Textual Studies and Digital Humanities (CTSDH) is proud to announce the launch of a new initiative: the Humanities Datebook. The Humanities Datebook is a weekly email distributed each Monday morning that contains a round-up of humanities-related events happening at Loyola for the upcoming weeks. It is for anyone - students, staff, faculty, community member -- who wants to stay abreast of the university’s rich offerings.
Loyola’s vibrant humanities community hosts a variety of events across campus each week, but it can be hard to keep track of them all. Events are advertised on departmental web pages, fliers, and mailing lists, but with so many different departments and centers, it’s easy for events to get lost in one’s inbox. That’s what inspired Ian Cornelius, Edward Surtz Associate Professor in the Department of English, to propose the Humanities Datebook: an easy-to-read digest of humanities events happening around Loyola, conveniently gathered in one weekly email.
Cornelius reached out to Kyle Roberts, Director of the CTSDH, at the start of the semester with the idea. As the College’s only humanities-focused interdisciplinary center, the CTSDH was a natural home for the project. Cornelius viewed the cooperative effort as “a service to the wider humanities community at Loyola, with benefits to the Center in the form of increased visibility.” Roberts agreed, and together with CTSDH fellow Tyler Monaghan, the three began work on creating the Datebook.
From the beginning, the Datebook was conceived as an opt-in, rather than an opt-out system. This means that rather than sending the Datebook out to the Loyola community and giving them the option to unsubscribe, recipients need to visit the Datebook’s website and sign up to receive the mailing. For recipients, opt-in was crucial since receiving yet another unsolicited email blast would hurt, not help, the inbox bloat the Datebook was designed to counteract. “Opt-in means that recipients can feel truly invited to every event we send out, since an event organizer took the proactive step of submitting their event to the Datebook,” explains Monaghan. In turn, this gives organizers confidence that their submissions are reaching an engaged audience.
Cornelius, Roberts, and Monaghan are committed to evaluating and tweaking the Datebook as necessary. So far, the helpfulness and buy-in of the Loyola community have impressed Monaghan, who is responsible for managing the creation and distribution of each week’s mailing. “It’s been gratifying to see event submissions roll in, our mailing list grow, and most of all, the words of encouragement and helpful suggestions from faculty all across Loyola’s humanities community.”
“When I see all of the fantastic events that people are submitting to the Datebook,” explains Roberts, “I have begun to realize how much I’ve missed out on over my time here. At a time when the humanities have come under fire nationally, it’s important to be able to show the important work being sponsored by Loyola’s artists, librarians, historians, philosophers, literary critics, theologians, linguists, and others!”
To learn more about the Humanities Datebook, visit the Datebook’s page on the CTSDH website. You can view past Datebooks, sign up to receive the Datebook in your email inbox each week, or submit an event to be listed.