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Van Gogh: The Life

In 2011 Gregory White Smith and Steve Naifeh published Vincent Van Gogh: the Life, adding to the large body of scholarship already extant on the famous Dutch artist. Shortly thereafter the authors published this website, working in collaboration with the Center for Digital Humanities at the University of South Carolina (UofSC), and Elizabeth Petit, Professor of Art History at UofSC and research editor for the book. Although the website is a companion to the book, it does not have to be used in conjunction; rather, it provides supplemental content including more than 28,000 research notes that identify sources, "share the authors' insights and assessments of sources," add Van Gogh biographers and scholars "into the discussion over controversial issues in the literature," and more. Clicking the yellow "Enter" button in the lower right-hand corner will transport users into the world of Van Gogh. From there readers can view these research notes (under Notes), a gallery of family photographs and family trees (under Family Tree), and a collection of Van Gogh's artwork (under Gallery). Readers may also want to check out the People page, where they can learn more about other individuals included in the book. After identifying characters that pique their interest, visitors can return to the Notes page and conduct a search to learn even more. For example, American reformer Jane Addams is mentioned on the list of people and by searching the notes it appears that Addams was an acquaintance of Margot Begemann, a neighbor and perhaps love interest of Van Gogh's.
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