Name: Franziska Kabelitz
University: School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London
Status: MA History of Art and Archaeology Candidate
Area of Research: Islamic Art History (specifically: Indian Subcontinent and Persia)
This post is the second of a series of posts showcasing some of the amazing research projects from our community of Lateral pioneers.
What are you researching currently?
I am currently completing a MA degree, so I am researching various topics for shorter papers and assignments. For example, I recently completed a paper on painted illustrations of the theme of transmission of knowledge in an Arabic translation of Dioscorides' "De Materia Medica" manuscript for my "Arab Painting" module. For a different module I reviewed a temporary exhibition of Iranian photographic works at the Museum of Islamic Art, Berlin, this past spring. For my MA dissertation I would like to research an illustrated Persian manuscript, but I have not yet decided which one.
What is your #1 research tip?
Keeping track of your sources! In my experience, it is quite easy to get lost in too many sources, quotes, and paragraphs, and so developing a system for keeping track of who said what where is important. In today's world most articles and books can be consulted online, which makes research much more accessible and interactive. However, at the same time I am often finding it difficult to remember where I read something when all pages consist of black type on white background on a screen and I can't flip through the pages physically. That's why being able to reply on a clear overview of readings and sources is paramount for my work routine.
How does Lateral help you with your research?
Lateral has allowed me to put my above research tip into action! The table view it creates based on the sources I feed it is very helpful. It provides clarity and links the sentences I've highlighted to their original sources without cluttering the overview. Moreover, Lateral has been helpful for reviewing and discussing my research with classmates. Instead of sharing papers and indicating page numbers and paragraph lines, I just sent a screenshot of my table view and my colleagues immediately know the parts I am referencing or want to discuss.