We hope you’ll find the site and database attractive and easy to use. Please let us know any difficulties you have in using it Alejandro García Reidy.
We are still building the site, adding more functions, as well as cleaning up data imported from the old site.
We invite your help in the process. For the benefit of all lovers of Spanish classical theater, please let us know of any problems you see in the data, or send along additions.
In the meantime, meet the Manos team…
Manos is built and maintained by three key people:
Margaret R. Greer
Margaret, the director of Manos and professor emerita of Spanish at Duke University (http://people.duke.edu/~mgreer/) started this database in the late 1980s, with a Fulbright Fellowship and the support of Manuel Sánchez Mariana, then head of the Manuscript section of the Sala Cervantes in the Biblioteca Nacional Española. (Plenty more about the history of the project in another post…)
Over the years, Margaret, with the help of many graduate students and other scholars, analyzed manuscripts and added information to an ever-growing database. (You’ll see the names of all those hard-working assistants in the manuscript detail pages.)
Margaret retired from teaching in July 2014, and her first mission was to upgrade the Manos Teatrales site and to expand our use of ManosID, the new method of computer-assisted handwriting identification that the Manos tech team is now perfecting for full implementation.
Alejandro, Manos’ associate director since 2010, is professor of Spanish Literature at Universidad de Salamanca (https://diarium.usal.es/alreidy/).
Alejandro received his PhD from the Universitat de Valencia (Spain) in 2009. At the same time he collaborated with Teresa Ferrer Valls and others in the development of the database Diccionario Biográfico de actores del teatro clásico español (DICAT), published in 2008. This database, which offers the biographies of early modern Spanish professional actors and actresses, is a resource that complements the Manos database by facilitating the identification of the companies that possessed the theatrical manuscripts. Due to his involvement in DICAT, Alejandro started to work closely with Manos, including a period as a postdoc associate at Duke from 2009 to 2011. He has continued work on this fascinating project ever since. Since 2019 he is PI of a research project funded by MCIU/AEI/FEDER that helps support this database.
Jim has been advising his mother on the Manos project since his years as a computer science student at Princeton in the early 1990s, when he first suggested to her that the process of identifying handwriting was something that a computer could be programmed to do.
This year, Jim—who’s the co-founder and CTO of the casual game site Kongregate http://www.kongregate.com, as well as the founder of the campaign-finance-reform organization CounterPAC http://www.counterpac.org--established the Manos Foundation, to give the project the necessary industry support. He is overseeing the technical renovation of Manos, with expert developers from Pivotal Labs.