What video have you been watching obsessively on YouTube? What meme popped up on your Facebook feed today for the hundredth time? What crazy forwarded email did you get from your grandmother yesterday? Whether we want to admit it or not, in the digital age we are constantly confronted by things that have gone viral.
Of course the next question is “Why?” Why do these things go viral? What makes something viral in the first place? Did things go viral before there were computers or the internet? These are the kinds of questions we are looking to ask and answer in “Narratives Gone Viral,” a new course offered in Spring 2013 by Humanities on Demand, an Emerging Humanities Network grant funded by Humanities Writ Large.
On our new website (viral.trinity.duke.edu), we are looking for students from across the Duke community to tell us what is viral for you. What are you watching, listening to, thinking about, obsessing over? We want you to bring this to us and let us in on it.
By doing that you are also contributing to a new way of creating courses at Duke. We’ll take your ideas and the ideas of your fellow students and use them to build a syllabus for the course, giving you a say in what we teach, whether you sign up for the course or not. Check out the website, which goes live to the whole Duke community on October 8. It’s easy to just stop by, see what others have been talking about, and add to the conversation yourself. Give us that thing that you can’t get out of your head and we’ll show you what a humanities education can do with it.
Tell your friends, your roommates, your classmates, and your students. “Narratives Gone Viral” is coming to a classroom near you. Check out our website viral.trinity.duke.edu and join us in exploring all things viral.