A Digital Humanities project in connection with a recent book by Dr. Andrew Flachs of the university’s Department of Anthropology is featured by Esri’s “What We’re Reading” section. The story can be found at the following URL:
The story will also be featured in the StoryMaps Weekly Waypoint, the weekly newsletter of StoryMaps resources, featured stories, and social media content. It can be found at the following URL:
In the project, titled “The Global Lives of Indian Cotton”, assistant professor Andrew Flachs uses Esri StoryMaps software to unveil these connections and give readers tools to see through the eyes of the complex figures who make our everyday clothing possible. In addition to raising national cotton yields, lowering consumer costs, and providing new markets for agribusinesses that sell farm inputs, global technological shifts in agriculture have exacerbated uncertainty and redefined aspirations for rural communities. Dr. Flachs’ research argues that these affective, sociocultural factors cannot be understood apart from the material political economy.
The StoryMap bridges the humanities, agriculture, and social science by combining empirical data on both social and material factors in agrarian life. It invites visitors to connect their experiences with cotton and clothing to seed markets, laboratory-based genetic engineering, and the stakes of life in places like rural Telangana, India.
Liz Brite, Clinical Associate Professor in the Purdue Honors College, contributed to the project, which was funded by the CLA Enhancing Research in the Humanities and Arts grant program.