The Peopling of East Harlem

Professor: Peter Vellon
ITF: Maggie Dickinson
Campus: Queens

Professor Vellon’s class at Queens College worked with ITF Maggie Dickinson to complete a site focused on the East Harlem neighborhood of Manhattan. They created a photo gallery on the front page, detailed demographic trends, made maps, videos, and timelines to show important institutions and events, and kept a class blog.




Thoughts on the project from ITF Maggie Dickinson

The central theme of this class was the economic, political and demographic transitions that have taken place in East Harlem over the past hundred years. Students were introduced to the history of East Harlem through historical, biographical and sociological texts. But the subject matter really came alive when they got to explore the neighborhood through walking tours of the area. One of the things we emphasized was documenting what they saw as they walked around the neighborhood through photography and video, most of which was shot on Vado cameras provided by Macualay.

What started out as an unorganized mass of photographs and video clips became, over the course of the semester, the basis for maps locating important institutions in the neighborhood, short videos and images that introduce the viewer to the neighborhood’s everyday sights and sounds, and evidence of the changing economic, cultural and political landscapes in the area. Students were generous with one another, sharing their images by uploading them to the website library and allowing all the students in the class to draw on these images to build their particular sections.

This student-generated content was paired up with other kinds of research data that students felt lent itself to the visual medium of a website, including demographic maps made with Social Explorer and documentary and archival photos used for building interactive timelines using Dipity. The site came together by balancing the autonomy of the working groups, who were each responsible for producing the content of one section based on the work they were doing for their research papers, and coming together as a group to create an aesthetic framework that lent cohesion to the website as a whole. The front page, with its gallery of images used throughout the website, showcases the people, politics, culture and institutions that make up the East Harlem community.

Peopling of East Harlem | 2011 | 2011, All The Sites, Dipity, East Harlem, Featured, Index, Maggie Dickinson, Manhattan, maps, Peter Vellon, Queens College, umapper, video, Wix | Media: , , , , , , , | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Comments (0)

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