Then . . .
How I became interested in writing about the Caribbean and creating digital archives is an interesting story that began many years ago in Puerto Rico, and eventually shaped my doctoral research in Early Caribbean literary history. Part of my research involved travel to unique archives located throughout the small Caribbean islands. Since much of the early material was written in manuscript form, access to these histories and narratives was limited and I discovered that many fragile texts had been relocated to larger European archives. However, with the development of digital technologies the possibility of making these valuable histories accessible in a digital format sparked an interest in creating digital archives.
Eventually, my fascination with digital technologies and the ways in which these historical artifacts could be represented in online archives, generated an interest in how digital representations of the Caribbean influence public perception of the region. As I learned more about the history and culture of the West Indies, this research evolved into a passion for the art and music of the many cultures and people scattered throughout the Caribbean and Latin America. To read more about the Caribbean and my research interests you may visit: www.virtual-caribbean.net
Now . . .
While developing a course on writing and digital media, I encountered the following passage from Katherine Hayles’ book “Writing Machines” :
“To change the physical form of the artifact is not merely to change the act of reading . . . but profoundly to transform the metaphoric network structuring the relation of word to world.”
These words also describe how the interaction between the author, text, reader, and digital media work in a symbiotic process. As you work with the texts and digital representations used in this course, I hope you enjoy the journey and discover the unique beauty and magic of the Caribbean islands and Creole cultures.
Bon Voyage, Buen Viaje, Safe Journey,