Book chapter co-authored by Bettivia examines digital heritage

Postdoctoral Research Associate Rhiannon Bettivia (PhD '16) is the co-author of a chapter in Politics of Scale: New Directions in Critical Heritage Studies, a newly published book edited by Tuuli Lähdesmäki, Suzie Thomas, and Yujie Zhu. In the chapter, "The Dynamics of Scale in Digital Heritage Cultures," Bettivia and Elizabeth Stainforth, a lecturer at the University of Leeds, examine scalar politics as enacted through Europeana, the EU digital platform for cultural heritage, and the Digital Public Library of America. The idea of scale and scalar relations comes broadly from the field of geography and examines issues of space, magnitude, or level. Politics of Scale is the first scholarly publication to consider scale and heritage together.

"The idea is to look at the same museum or work of art, or the Europeana and DPLA projects in my chapter, from the perspective of different levels of space or magnitude to examine how political implications manifest differently (or similarly) as the scale changes," Bettivia said. "In the case of heritage, scales of location could include looking at the local contexts versus national or supranational ones, or different scales of time, like the life of an artist versus the life of an institution versus the geological scale of animal migrations in the designation of a UNESCO World Heritage Site."

Bettivia's research explores the standards undergirding digital platforms from an intersectional and transnational perspective, combining issues of race, gender, and nation in digital memory cultures. She examines the politics and discourses of mass culture and heritage aggregation. She has published in the International Journal of Digital Curation and Digital Humanities Quarterly, among other publications in the fields of information science, critical heritage studies, digital humanities and communications.

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