Connecting North Carolina and Pakistan: DH and Beyond, Part 1

As an exciting outgrowth of the Duke-NCCU Digital Humanities collaboration, NCCU Professor of Postcolonial and South Asian Studies Matthew A. Cook organized a DH exchange program through the American Institute of Pakistan Studies that brought a small delegation of NCCU faculty (all Duke-NCCU DH alumni) to Lahore, Pakistan, in early May 2019 and a group of 5 Pakistani fellows to North Carolina for a month-long residency later that summer. Duke’s Victoria Szabo and Hannah Jacobs also played their part. Here’s a brief overview from project PI Cook. For a more personal take, see this post by NCCU faculty host Michele Ware.


Group photo of NCCU faculty and Pakistani DH workshop participants at LUMS (Lahore University of Management Sciences)

Cook, Fulford, and Robinson with participants of the DH workshops at LUMS (Lahore University of Management Sciences)

Three U.S. scholars from North Carolina Central University (NCCU) led a Digital Humanities workshop in Lahore, Pakistan from May 6-8, 2019. The scholars – Matthew A. Cook, Collie Fulford, and Russell Robinson – are fellows of the NCCU-Duke Digital Humanities Initiative. They utilized the skills they developed as fellows to work with junior Pakistani faculty to build their digital humanities skills. The workshop focus revolved around learning new skills and how to integrate them into teaching and classroom activities. Twelve Pakistani scholars participated in the workshop, which included one-on-one mentoring by the NCCU faculty as well as instruction by Victoria Szabo and Hannah Jacobs from Duke University. The Pakistani scholars participating were: M. Ibrahim Khokhar (Shah Abu Latif University), Marvi Sheikh (University of Sindh), Shumaila Umer (Sardar Bahadur Khan University), Ayesha Akram (University of Education, Lahore), Sania Munir (University of Lahore), Ihsanullah Jan (Hazara University), Fatima Bilquis (Lahore University of Management Sciences), Furrukh Khan (Lahore University of Management Sciences), Nadhra Shahbhaz Naeem Khan (Lahore University of Management Sciences), Antonio Marasco (Lahore University of Management Sciences), and Ali Usman Qasmi (Lahore University of Management Sciences).

Hannah Jacobs, in Durham, leading a virtual workshop for faculty fellows gathered at Lahore. Photo by Victoria Szabo.

The workshop in Lahore was the first of a two-part program. The second part was in North Carolina between May 20 and June 24, 2019. The Carolina Asia Center sponsored it, and U.S. Embassy in Islamabad funded it. Five Pakistani scholars from the Lahore workshop – Khokhar, Sheikh, Umer, Akram, and Munir – travelled to the U.S. for five weeks. They attended weekly workshops in North Carolina, including a multi-day institute organized by the Triangle Digital Humanities Network. They also participated in weekly one-on-one mentoring sessions with faculty from NCCU and in a variety of cultural, historical, and educational excursions in Triangle Area. In addition to Cook, Fulford, and Robinson, 2018-19 Fellows Brett Chambers and Michele Ware also served as faculty hosts and mentors.

Group photo of Pakistani exchange fellows, NCCU faculty, and Duke faculty at the Duke University Wired! Lab

NCCU and Pakistani exchange fellows on a tour of the Duke Wired! Lab

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