The voyage begins…

Pre-modern travel.  “Digital Humanities.”  A brave new world not unlike other encounters with new and different cultures.  As we navigate this space, new to us though certainly not to others, we are blogging the creation of this site on pre-Columbian contact with the New World in a sort of travel journal inspired by Pordenone, Mandeville, Léry, Cartier, et. al.  We began this voyage as back in 2009 when Geraldine Heng (UT-Texas) asked Lynn Ramey (Vanderbilt) to head up a web portal on pre-modern travel, focused on the Americas, but envisioning a global concept of the Middle Ages.  Vanderbilt colleagues Holly Tucker and Todd Hughes joined in 2011 as we began thinking of ways to involve crowdsourcing and instruction as primary means of developing the portal.  Our blog/journal begins at this point, where we are piloting a graduate course that will instruct students on some basic ideas in the digital humanities using this project as our virtual classroom.