Prioritizing Public Digital Humanities Projects

We have been deeply saddened by the images of police brutality against Black people and protesters we have seen in recent days. We mourn the loss of George Floyd, Breonna Taylor, Ahmaud Arbery and the countless others who have been terrorized and killed by systems designed to enforce white supremacy.

At the same time, we have been inspired by the courage and creativity of activists who demand an end to police brutality specifically and white supremacy generally. As Frederick Douglass said, “power concedes nothing without a demand.” Over the past week we have seen small but exciting hints that these efforts have succeeded in compelling more people to confront the reality and the history of anti-Black racism and to add their voices to the chorus demanding change.

If you are a researcher in the School of Arts and Sciences at Penn who has been thinking about how your own work will rise to the challenge of this historical moment, the Price Lab for Digital Humanities is here to help. We have funds as part of a four-year grant from the Mellon Foundation and will prioritize humanistic research projects that use digital tools and methods to benefit people beyond the academy and particularly in the Philadelphia region. If you or someone you know has an idea, contact Stewart Varner ( to discuss how to create a proposal.