Tag Archives: intellectual history

Visualizing Global Migration Over a Millennium and a Half

Check out this neat video. It visualizes the history of migration by tracking the migration of noted personalities. The data is mined from Freebase.com.

I think this can also be done for the history of Islamicate societies by mining biographical dictionaries. I am most familiar with the biographical dictionaries of the 9th, 10th, and 11th centuries produced in the Near East. These dictionaries contain thousands of entries recording all kinds of tidbits information, including, often, birth and death places and dates, places of study, places visited and scholars studied under, etc. I know that, outside, of the Near East, other Islamicate societies in later times continued on the tradition of compiling biographical dictionaries. Many of these dictionaries have already been rendered into digital form of some sort or another. The next step would be mining them for the relevant factual information then visualizing it in the manner done in the video.