Digital Information System for the History of Astral Sciences (DISHAS)

Digital Humanities Meetups welcomes guest speaker Dr Anuj Misra from the Observatoire de Paris. Details of the talk below.

When: 6th September, 3-4pm
Where: Poutama Room 388, Puaka-James Hight Library, UC Canterbury.


With increasing collections of historical sources becoming accessible to different scholars from different areas of expertise, the advances in digital humanities provide powerful means to analyse, edit, and relate this growing corpus in more meaningful ways that one may have previously imagined. The DISHAS project (Digital Information System for the History of Astral Sciences) is an ERC-funded research project based at the SYRTE Laboratory, Observatoire de Paris in France that works in designing digital solutions to aid in the study of the history of astral sciences. DISHAS relies on a collaborative network of international projects in Chinese, Sanskrit, Arabic, Latin and Hebrew traditions as it develops digital tools to store, edit, and analyse different types of `knowledge-structures’ in the history of astral sciences, namely, scientific instruments, prose and versified texts, iconography and technical/geometrical diagrams, and astronomical tables. This talk introduces the current state of DISHAS as it works with astronomical tables as its preliminary developmental focus.


Dr Anuj Misra is a historian of mathematics who works on medieval and early modern sources in Sanskrit mathematical astronomy. His research focuses on structural changes in systems of knowledge, in particular, the Islamic influence in Sanskrit astronomical texts and tables of early modern Mughal India. Dr Misra is adept at reading several classical languages of antiquity and mainly works with primary sources (manuscripts) in his study of cross-cultural transmission of mathematical ideas. He is trained in theoretical physics and philosophy and maintains a keen research interest in areas of computational humanities, mathematical anthropology, cognitive linguistics, and philosophy of mathematics. He is currently a postdoctoral fellow of the Systèmes de Référence Temps Espace (SYRTE) Laboratory at the Observatoire de Paris in France.