John F. Barber, PhD

The Creative Media & Digital Culture Program
Washington State University Vancouver
Vancouver, Washington, USA


I convene with The Creative Media & Digital Culture program at Washington State University Vancouver. My scholarship, teaching, and creative endeavors focus on three areas: Digital Humanities, sound as the basis of narrative and storytelling, and media art and digital works

Digital Humanities

My work in Digital Humanities is largely guided by the research question "How might digital technologies facilitate the collection, organization, and presentation of information and narrative structures?"

One answer is digital archiving and curation. My interest in the temporality of writing led me to develop and curate Brautigan Bibliography and Archive (, the preeminent resource on the life and writings of American author Richard Brautigan. Two books, Richard Brautigan: An Annotated Bibliography (McFarland, 1990) and Richard Brautigan: Essays on the Writings and Life (McFarland, 2007), are offshoots of this work. I have contributed essays regarding Brautigan to The Honest Ulsterman, Postwar Literature 1945-1970: Research Guide to American Literature, Encyclopedia of Beat Literature, and various international literary journals. Learn more.

Sound as the Basis of Narrative and Storytelling

The temporality of sound, and belief that sound forms the basis for narrative, led me to develop and maintain Radio Nouspace (, a repository and a laboratory, to support my research, scholarship, teaching, and creative practices regarding radio, sound, and listening as closely connected with communication, creative endeavor, literacy, and social justice. As a repository, Radio Nouspace collects and organizes information and resources. As a laboratory, Radio Nouspace provides a space to undertake practice-based research and creative making of radio and sound art. My creative radio+sound art work has been broadcast internationally, and featured in juried exhibitions in America, Brazil, Canada, England, Germany, Lithuania, Macedonia, Northern Ireland, Portugal, and Spain. Learn more.

Media Art and Digital Works

I produce media art and digital works as examples of my scholarship and creative expression inspired by that research. As a sound artist, I create media art and digital works exploring sound-based narratives. I am especially interested in radio (or "transmission," based on the interaction with the transmission technologies of radio) + sound art as they provide opportunities for sounds from various sources and cultures to create and sustain new narrative strategies and subvert historical media conventions. Learn more.


I began my academic career exploring the use of computer technology to facilitate the teaching and learning of writing. New Worlds, New Words: Exploring Pathways for Writing about and in Electronic Environments (2001, John Barber and Dene Grigar, eds. Hampton Press), focuses on the future of writing following its move into electronic spaces. I contributed chapters focusing on the use of mediated, electronic environments as sites for meaningful human interaction to Texts and Technology, The Online Writing Classroom, Electronic Networks, High Wired, and Studies in Technical Communication. My essays have been published in peer reviewed print journals like Readerly Writerly Text, Works and Days, Pre/Text, Leonardo Digital Reviews, Fine Art Forum, and Kairos.

Since 2006 my focus has shifted to Digital Humanities (archiving and curating) and media art, specifically sound as the basis for narrative and storytelling. Check my current CV (below) for information about my scholarly and creative productivity in these areas.

On a personal note, I think of myself as dynamically involved in the process of becoming. I manage life efficiently, pay my bills on time, and am acclaimed for my ability to prepare extraordinary four-course meals using only yogurt and granola. I have navigated the Mississippi River, walked the Great Wall of China, and spoken with Captain America. Learn more.

Contact John Barber

Barber > current CV