Information Access Seminar

Reviving Joan

Friday, November 13, 2015
3:10 pm to 5:00 pm
Cathy Marshall (Texas A&M University)

In 1951, well before he was a recognized literary figure, writer William S. Burroughs shot and killed his common-law wife, Joan Vollmer. I've spent the past two years trying to solve a seemingly intractable mystery: What was the nature of Joan Vollmer's influence on a nascent literary movement? What was the trajectory of her short life? In an effort to answer these questions, I've also taken on a methodological puzzle: can a combination of traditional sources (e.g. special collections held by research institutions) and non-traditional sources (newly available online collections and other digital resources and tools) be used to create a more nuanced view of someone's life? In this talk, I'll report on my progress and discuss the issues that have arisen from this research.

Cathy Marshall is an adjunct professor at Texas A&M University and a computer scientist gone rogue.

Last updated:

November 3, 2015