Announcing THATCamp Southeast Missouri

THATcamp Southeast Missouri will be September 28, 2013.  It will be held in Ironton, MO at the Arcadia Academy in Southeast Missouri, about 80 miles from St. Louis and about 70 miles from Cape Girardeau.

Because this unconference will occur in a rural area, we hope to encourage people to attend who might be inspired by the locale.

One of the considerations in a small rural town is the the lack of accessibility to humanities and technology.  Small towns across America are overlooked as areas that might benefit from the advances that have been made in the humanities and technology.

For example, these areas might be physically isolated; but, because of the egalitarian nature of the digital space, there are opportunities for communities to benefit from online connections. In fact, many towns survive because of the tourism that comes from visibility in this digital space.

Despite this advantage, areas such as the Arcadia Valley struggle with social issues that come from this isolation, including poverty and xenophobia. Southeast Missouri THATcamp is designed to bring those interested in the humanities and technology to a rural area grappling with these issues.

We want participants from and outside the area.  The event is open to the public, including academics, librarians, technology professionals and those who are just curious about the humanities and technology.

We encourage people to attend who believe that advances in the humanities and technology can be ways to address some of struggles present in rural communities, particularly the Arcadia Valley.

We hope that having an unconference in a small rural community might inspire a wide range of topics for discussion at the unconference.

There are no formal presentations at a THATcamp.  We will ask for ideas before the THATcamp and plan discussions during the conference day using those ideas as inspiration.  The theme of humanities and technology is wide open and THATcampers are ready to be surprised and engaged.

But, to get participants thinking, you might consider:

  • social spaces, and how the digital space can expand a notion of community
  • new possibilities for educational access provided by the digital space
  • how digital archives can retain the historical and cultural archives of rural America
  • how the digital space might interrupt the rural-urban migration
  • how technology trends change the economies of rural life
  • how access to technology and the digital landscape can ease political and racial tensions
  • and anything else you want to discuss or think about

Please register for this event.  We encourage you to register as early as possible because the event is capped at 50 participants.

All registrants will receive refreshments, a t-shirt and a lunch.  An optional dinner and evening entertainment will be available.  There are hostel rooms starting at $35 and a bed and breakfast at the Arcadia Academy, and many other lodging options in the area.  If you choose to stay over and would like to explore the area, we will provide information to help you on your adventure.

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