Science and Culture – Removing Borders
02:30 pm | National Library of Portugal The Inquisitor, the Censor and the Digital Humanist, by Hervé Baudry


The digital revolution has come to break down barriers. One of them is what we call open access. Any citizen can access a prodigious amount of data for knowledge of our world. We are still far from making so many horizons within our immediate reach, but things will never be the same and can only broaden the horizon of each individual, whether they are an agent or a recipient of this opening. Robert Darnton, the librarian of Harvard, promoted the Digital Public Library of America (DPLA) project at the beginning of the millennium. In an article from 2020 entitled "Digitize, democratize," he believes that "by 2050 there will be a world library, open to all humanity." The concept of a universal library has already become familiar: the book for everyone, knowledge at the click of a computer. However, this ongoing ideal is incomplete. Another institution is missing that, like libraries, also responds to "the desire for history that runs through democratic societies." Like libraries, these institutions are keepers of memory. These are the archives, but who has ever talked about a universal archive?


This presentation will address two topics closely related in this dynamic and promising framework: inquisitorial processes and censorship. Both have links in various aspects and for historical reasons, and are objects in part of the digital revolution.


Hervé Baudry is a researcher in the Modern and Contemporary Thought Group of CHAM. With a PhD and qualification in French literature, he has been working since 2011 on the censorship of expurgation, or micro-censorship in the early modern period. He is responsible for the exploratory FCT project "Transcribing the processes of the Portuguese Inquisition (1536-1821)" for the creation of an Artificial Intelligence model for automated transcription of archives.



Adelino Cardoso (CHAM)

Nuno Miguel Proença (CHAM)