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How Smarthistory stacks up (and why museums should care about YouTube)

As part of our effort to assess Smarthistory’s effectiveness, we have begun to compare our reach against that of other providers of high-quality art history content on the web. Museums produce learning content that is broadly similar to that produced by Smarthistory. However, very few institutions come close to our increasingly global scope, number of […]

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Come to: “The Ancient Cities of Uzbekistan: An Exploration into the Silk Road and its Architectural and Religious Heritage,” an illustrated lecture given by Elizabeth Macaulay-Lewis (Smarthistory contributing editor) and George H. Lewis

Few images are more romanticized in the West than those of the Silk Road. Camel caravans laden with silk, carpets, and exotic spices have populated the western imagination since Marco Polo’s remarkable journey into China. However, the exchange on the Silk Road, or perhaps better the Silk Roads, was far more nuanced and complex. People […]

Monumental Arch, Palmyra

Manar-al-Athar — Free resource for the study of the Middle East (by Dr. Elizabeth Macaulay-Lewis)

The legacy of the Classical World’s material culture cannot be underestimated in the monuments of the Early Islamic world. The local mosaic traditions of Syro-Palestine, as well as those of Alexandria and Constantinople, were fundamental to the construction and decoration of monuments, such as the Dome of the Rock and Great Mosque of Damascus. The remarkable monuments of the […]

Beth in the Abbey of Fontenay

Just what is Smarthistory?

When we founded Smarthistory we focused on the needs of our students and the potential of the web for learning and dissemination—we never asked ourselves “what are we?,” “what should Smarthistory be like?” Perhaps as a result, we don’t often turn up on lists of open textbooks, or digital museum resources, or digital humanities (or digital […]

Andrea Mantegna, The Triumphs of Caesar: Trumpeters and Standard-Bearer, after 1486, Hampton Court Palace

Pliny’s (sm)art history—a post from Dr. Jeffrey Becker

Encyclopedic means “to be comprehensive in terms of information”—in other words, all the world’s knowledge in one place. Printed encyclopedias—take the landmark 1911 Encyclopedia Britannica—were long staples of households and libraries. These printed volumes are now largely supplanted by the World Wide Web where a great deal of information (along with a great many distractions) […]

View from Süleymaniye to the Golden Horn, Mimar Sinan, Süleymaniye Mosque for the Sultan Süleyman the Lawgiver, 1558, Istanbul

Doing digital art History & archaeology won’t hurt much! (I promise…) —a post from Dr. Elizabeth Macaulay Lewis

This week we feature a second post from Dr. Elizabeth Macaulay Lewis. I love teaching my graduate students. They are smart, insightful, and curious. They read Latin, Arabic, and even Ge’ez! They are, however, often self-professed luddites. I teach at the Graduate Center, The City University of New York, an institution that is very supportive of […]