Prof. Benjamin Hebblethwaite has been awarded a major Collaborative Research Grant by the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) for a project entitled Archive of Haitian Religion and Culture: Collaborative Research and Scholarship on Haiti and the Haitian Diaspora. He prepared this proposal with support from the spring 2011 grant-writing and proposal review activities provided by the UF Center for the Humanities and the Public Sphere. His project was among 244 selected nationally in 2012. It is one of only five major projects funded in Florida, and at over $240,000, it is the second largest award in the state in 2012. Prof. Hebblethwaite will direct this project in collaboration with co-director Prof. Laurent Dubois of Duke University.
The Archive of Haitian Religion and Culture project seeks to counter reductionist and racist visions of Vodou religion and support further research in this area. It will do so by creating an online freely-accessible digital archive of materials documenting central Haitian and Haitian-American spiritual traditions and the Vodou religion. Profs. Hebblethwaite and Dubois selected materials based on their importance to Vodou communities or on the importance of the collections they represent. The digital archive will ultimately consist of images and annotations; sound and audiovisual recordings with accompanying transcriptions or subtitles; manuscript and textual sources; and critical syntheses provided by Prof. Hebblethwaite and other leading scholars. The collection will continue to grow as users contribute through a self-submission tool. The three-year digital humanities project is scheduled for completion in summer 2015. The Digital Library of the Caribbean will host the archive at the following site: http://www.dloc.com/vodou.
Center for the Humanities
and the Public Sphere
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
200 Walker Hall
P.O. Box 118030
University of Florida
Gainesville, FL 32611