Dr. Shannan Butler, associate professor of Communication, presented his research on the use of data visualization in digital humanities at the Southern States Communication Association Convention in San Antonio, Texas this Saturday. Dr. Butler's presentation, entitled "New Tools for an Old Art: Rhetorical Analysis through Visualization and Play" advocates the engagement of rhetorical artifacts through the practice of visual play.
Dr. Butler argues that new technologies developed to visualize large data sets on the social web now offer rhetoricians the ability to engage data that would have been impossible to explore using traditional techniques. By combining freely available online data visualization applications with an understanding of rhetorical criticism and a sense of play, he believes it is possible to engage textual data in a new and exciting way.
Dr. Butler has published his research on data visualization in digital humanities in several peer-reviewed journals, including:
Butler, S. (2011). Teaching Rhetoric through Data Visualization. Communication Teacher, 25(3), 131-135.
Weisgerber, C. & Butler, S. (2009). Visualizing the Future of Interaction Studies: Data Visualization Applications as a Research, Pedagogical, and Presentational Tool for Interaction Scholars. Electronic Journal of Communication, 19(1-2).