Saturday, 26 May 2012

Remembering a 2007 post dedicated to Roy Rosenzweig

Roy Rosenzweig, 1950-2007
I wrote in Italian a very short post dedicated to Roy Rosenzweig. It was in October 2007, the month he died. This Italian post should have started this blog which -for many reasons- never started until this May 2012! But the post was still there on Blogger when I decided to open the site. And it makes still sense to tell about this 2007 contribution in honour of Roy Rosenzweig now I guess. At the end of the ’90, we were in Italy an interdisciplinary group of contemporary historians: public and academic ones, librarians, archivists. We all were concerned by the impact of new technologies on our professions. And Roy Rosenzweig was there with us from the start, from the second half of the '90. It was Antonino Criscione, a Sicilian born historian living in Milano, who introduced Roy to our group. Roy Rosenzweig is often quoted in the book we dedicated to the memory of Antonino Criscione (Nènè for his friends) this Italian pioneer of digital history in the Peninsula, after his dead in 2004. Nènè introduced us to Roy's perspective on digital history and on the idea that everybody was -thanks to the web- now able to “become a historian”. Roy is quoted many times in Web e Storia contemporanea, Roma, Carocci, 2006 a book published including all Criscione's essays. In the introduction -"La Galassiafrage di Antonino Criscione"-, I wrote to remembering Criscione, both a philosopher and a historian, trying to show how much Roy Rosenzweig was important for Nènè's own reflections. Through Nènè, Roy became a central reference for all our group of Italian digital historians. 

Starting the new Millennium, we all were reading his essays and books and it is not too much to say that Roy was sitting at our table when we did monitored for three years, the contents and structure of the Italian History Web between 2000 and 2004, an enquiry which became later a published book with, again, many citations taken from the “opera” of our "virtual" American colleague and -we would have liked to- “friend”. 

Today I decided to say about this 2007 post -and the context of the post- in the web site activated some years ago in Virginia, at the Center for History and New Media of the George Mason University to the memory of Roy Rosenzweig. The center is now called Roy Rosenzweig Center for History and New Media and I personally know that I am owing much to Roy Rosenzweig and the Digital History Center he created if I look back to my own professional itinerary. 

So I think I should have started a blog with "thanking Roy". Don't you think so ?

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