…begin with a morning of talks on various aspects of the history of psychiatry and mental health, to provide some inspiration for the editing to come! After a break for lunch, we’ll dive into some wiki-training from Alice White, Wikimedian in Residence at the Wellcome Library, which will cover everything from to creating an account and to how to edit. After learning your way around and getting comfortable with editing, you will have the opportunity to develop articles on the history of psychiatry: there are lots of pages on institutions, groups and individuals (particularly women) that are missing or very brief, so there’s lots of scope for making some exciting improvements!
Complete beginners are welcome to attend, and no previous experience is necessary, though a little digital skill is needed – but if you can use Microsoft Word, you can edit Wikipedia. Participants should bring a laptop or tablet (or request one in advance when you sign up) – editing is much easier with a keyboard. If you’ve spotted an article that needs improving, bring along your queries and we’ll see what we can do to help!
Individuals are also welcome to join the event remotely. Full details are available here.
Phoebe Harkins, the Library Communications Co-ordinator at Wellcome, has posted an application announcement for a new contractual position of Wikimedian in Residence on their blog (flexible 6-12 months, depending on the projects the Wikimedian proposes and develops).
Excerpts from the post:
Incurably curious? Interested in the history of medicine? Know a bit about Wikipedia?
Our collections cover so much more than the history of medicine – essentially life, death and everything in between, so there’s huge potential for improving the content on Wikipedia. We’ll also be looking at enriching other Wikimedia projects.
The Wikimedian will work with us on the project to help develop areas of Wikipedia covered by our amazing holdings. We’d love you to help us to make our world-renowned collections, knowledge and expertise here at the Wellcome Library even more accessible.
AHP’s most commented-upon entry to date has been the February 1 post on the addition of significant amounts of material on the medieval Muslim scientist al-Haytham (Al Hazen) to the Wikipedia entry on the history of psychology [link fixed]. Some of the most interesting parts of that debate had to do with the development of Wikipedia as a resource. Although once anathema to many academics, Wikipedia’s sheer pervasiveness (and its surprisingly high, if still not perfect, level of accuracy) have led some to call for a change in tactics — using our scholarly skills to improve it rather than shunning it and forbidding our student from using it.
In light of our recent fascinating discussion on the relative merits of detailing pre-modern philosophies of the mind and soul in the Wikipedia history of psychology entry, I ran across a recent article that I thought might be of interest. As you may recall, the discussion focused on whether material pertaining Alhazen’s research on optics, and that of other medieval Islamic philosophers, merited inclusion in a necessarily brief description of psychology’s history (viz., an encyclopedia entry).
An interesting clash of historiographic sensibilities has cropped up of late on the Wikipedia entry on the history of psychology. (Disclaimer: about 6,000 words of that entry were written by me last year.) Over the past few weeks, one user who uses the name “Jagged 85” has been adding large amounts of material on what he calls “medieval psychology.” What he means by this, specifically, are instances of Islamic science and broader social practice that seem to roughly correspond to topics and practices that we, in the present and in the West, regard as being a part of the discipline of psychology. For instance, he makes the following claims: Continue reading Presentism in the Service of Diversity?→