We are eager to extend a warm welcome as you arrive in Portsmouth for the Symposium on Appalachian Studies in the Digital Age, April 12-13, 2018. We have an exciting program planned around the theme—“Visualizing Appalachia.”

Intense media coverage, academic knowledge-building, and popular image-production conceptualize and visualize the Appalachian region, but seldom do these processes involve the sort of accurate, diverse, and nuanced engagements that we hope to advance in part through our event.  Of particular interest for this gathering is the challenge that may be posed to mainstream narratives and perspectives through the digital humanities and digital arts.

In addition to Roger May’s keynote address on photographing and photographs of Appalachia and a screening of Elaine Sheldon’s Oscar-nominated Netflix Original documentary, Heroin(e), the conference will feature a series of plenary sessions that exam the depiction of Portsmouth and the larger Appalachian region in the age of Facebook, Netflix, and Trump.

The mixed-genre, interdisciplinary sessions will draw on everything from history and literature to music and storytelling. The symposium will also feature an array of individual and group presentations including academic papers, panels, workshops, readings, films, performances, an art installation, and an historic driving tour.

Join us at Shawnee State University in Portsmouth, Ohio, and help us celebrate the launch of a new 15-Credit Hour Certificate in Digital Appalachian Studies. Beginning in the fall of 2018, Shawnee State will begin offering courses for a new digital humanities certificate program that focuses on the region of Appalachia.  We look forward to the program’s inaugural symposium and are so glad you are joining us for a two-day exploration of Appalachian Studies in the Digital Age.

While you are in Portsmouth and attending sessions remember to post your photographs to Instagram and Facebook using the hashtags: #digitalappalachia #portsmouthohio #asda2018

Once again, welcome to Portsmouth, Ohio, and Shawnee State University.

See you soon!

Andrew Feight, Symposium Director

Janet Feight, Program Coordinator

Thomas Bunting, Registration and Local Arrangements

The symposium is made possible in part through a grant from the Steven A. Hunter Appalachian Legacy Project of the Shawnee State University Development Foundation.