Lecture: On Price’s “Edition, Project, Database, Archive, Thematic Research Collection”

While Kenneth Price’s purpose for writing “Edition, Project, Database, Archive, Thematic Research Collection: What’s in a Name?” is to propose a new term for describing the kinds of “large-scale, text-based electronic scholarship” (par. 1) now taking place, the article serves a useful purpose in bringing together and exploring various terms we’ve encountered this term. As he notes, while the various terms – edition, project, database, archive, thematic research collection – have all been applied to these forms of electronic scholarship, they all come with different connotations while at the same time not having clear boundaries.

For example, while we’re using the terms project and edition for the McLuhan Project and the Electronic Edition project, one could easily argue that the McLuhan Project involves creating an edition, and that both projects could just as easily be called thematic research collections. Even as we find the boundaries between these terms permeable, it’s useful to understand how they differ as well.

And while I’m not particularly fond of Price’s suggestion – arsenal – his larger point, that digital environments are allowing us to reimagine what it means to do text-based scholarship and the ways in which that scholarship can take form.

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