Class 6 (English 197 – Spring 2024)

This is the main course website. There is also a course Canvas site for uploading assignments.

Class Business

  • Reading for Next Class
  • Practicum 3 (by class 7 this Tuesday): Text Analysis Exercise
  • Due April 30th: Project Concept Proposal 1 (Text Analysis Project Proposal)
    • Read over the assignment instructions by next Tuesday so that you can ask questions about it. Also, have in mind by Tuesday an idea for the kind of material(s) you might want to propose doing a text-analysis project about.

(continued from last class) Discussion of Text Encoding

arrowhead-right-black-small Alan Liu“Transcendental Data: Toward a Cultural History and Aesthetics of the New Encoded Discourse” (2004) (read only pp. 49-57)

arrowhead-right-black-small William Blake, “The Sick Rose” (from Songs of Innocence and of Experience, 1789)

  • Facsimile Reproduction
    “The Sick Rose”
    (Songs of Innocence and of Experience, 1789, 1794 ; Copy C; The Blake Archive, object 37)
  • Transcription
    O Rose, thou art sick!
    The invisible worm,
    That flies in the night,
    In the howling storm,
    Has found out thy bed
    Of crimson joy;
    And his dark secret love
    Does thy life destroy.
  • Markup (HTML)
    <div id=”blake-poem”>
    <p class=”stanza” id=”p1″>

    O Rose, thou art sick!
    The invisible worm,
    That flies in the night,
    In the howling storm,
    </p>
    <p class=”stanza” id=”p2″></span>
    Has found out thy bed
    Of crimson joy;
    And his dark secret love
    Does thy life destroy.
    </p>
    </div>
  • Markup (TEI)

    William Blake, "The Sick Rose" (1794) -- simplified example of text-encoding markup
    William Blake, “The Sick Rose” (1794) — simplified example of text-encoding markup.

  • Walter Benjamin, “The Work of Art in the Age of Mechanical Reproduction” (English translation, 1968).

    One might subsume the eliminated element in the term “aura” and go on to say: that which withers in the age of mechanical reproduction is the aura of the work of art….”

    Unmistakably, reproduction as offered by picture magazines and newsreels differs from the image seen by the unarmed eye. Uniqueness and permanence are as closely linked in the latter as are transitoriness and reproducibility in the former. To pry an object from its shell, to destroy its aura, is the mark of a perception whose ‘sense of the universal equality of things’ has increased to such a degree that it extracts it even from a unique object by means of reproduction.

  • WordPress “The Loop”
  • SQL query — e.g., ““SELECT * FROM Artists ORDER BY LastName, FirstName, Dates, Nation”

Homer, The Odyssey

Sing in me, Muse, and through me tell the story
of that man skilled in all ways of contending,
the wanderer, harried for years on end,
after he plundered the stronghold
on the proud height of Troy.

John Milton, Paradise Lost

Of Man’s first disobedience, and the fruit
Of that forbidden tree whose mortal taste
Brought death into the World, and all our woe,
With loss of Eden, till one greater Man
Restore us, and regain the blissful seat,
Sing, Heavenly Muse, that, on the secret top
Of Oreb, or of Sinai, didst inspire
That shepherd who first taught the chosen seed
In the beginning how the heavens and earth
Rose out of Chaos: or, if Sion hill
Delight thee more, and Siloa’s brook that flowed
Fast by the oracle of God, I thence
Invoke thy aid to my adventurous song,
That with no middle flight intends to soar
Above th’ Aonian mount, while it pursues
Things unattempted yet in prose or rhyme.
And chiefly thou, O Spirit, that dost prefer
Before all temples th’ upright heart and pure,
Instruct me, for thou know’st; thou from the first
Wast present, and, with mighty wings outspread,
Dove-like sat’st brooding on the vast Abyss,
And mad’st it pregnant: what in me is dark
Illumine, what is low raise and support;
That, to the height of this great argument,
I may assert Eternal Providence,
And justify the ways of God to men.

Text Analysis

arrowhead-right-black-small Alan’s slides on relation between text-encoding and text-anaylsis (using Yin Liu’s table of paradigms of text in “Ways of Reading, Models for Text, and the Usefulness of Dead People”)

Slides comparing text encoding and text analysis from Alan Liu's English 25 course (using Yin Liu's table) (screenshot from slides)

Fleuron icon (small)

arrowhead-right-black-small Ryan Heuser and Long Le-Khac“A Quantitative Literary History of 2,958 Nineteenth-Century British Novels: The Semantic Cohort Method” (2012)

Ryan Heuser & Long Le-Khac,
Stanford Literary Lab Pamphlet #4 (Other Stanford Literary Lab pamphlets)

Ryan Heuser and Long Le-Khac, “A Quantitative Literary History of 2,958 Nineteenth-Century British Novels: The Semantic Cohort Method” (2012) -- (p. 8)

Ryan Heuser and Long Le-Khac, “A Quantitative Literary History of 2,958 Nineteenth-Century British Novels: The Semantic Cohort Method” (2012) -- Figure 5 (p. 14)
Figure 5 (p. 14)
Ryan Heuser and Long Le-Khac, “A Quantitative Literary History of 2,958 Nineteenth-Century British Novels: The Semantic Cohort Method” (2012) -- (p. 20)
(p. 20)
Ryan Heuser and Long Le-Khac, “A Quantitative Literary History of 2,958 Nineteenth-Century British Novels: The Semantic Cohort Method” (2012) -- Figure 15 (p. 27)
Figure 15 (p. 27)
Ryan Heuser and Long Le-Khac, “A Quantitative Literary History of 2,958 Nineteenth-Century British Novels: The Semantic Cohort Method” (2012) -- Figure 18 (p. 32)
Figure 18 (p. 32)
Annotated quotation from Charles Dickens' Great Expectations in Ryan Heuser and Long Le-Khac, “A Quantitative Literary History of 2,958 Nineteenth-Century British Novels: The Semantic Cohort Method” (2012) -- (pp. 41-42)
Annotated quotation from Charles Dickens’ Great Expectations in Ryan Heuser and Long Le-Khac, “A Quantitative Literary History of 2,958 Nineteenth-Century British Novels: The Semantic Cohort Method” (2012) — (pp. 41-42)

The general methodological problem of the digital humanities can be bluntly stated: How do we get from numbers to meaning?… In our research we’ve found it useful to think about this problem through two central terms: signal and concept. We define a signal as the behavior of the feature actually being tracked and analyzed. The signal could be any number of things that are readily tracked computationally…. A concept, on the other hand, is the phenomenon that we take a signal to stand for, or the phenomenon we take the signal to reveal. It’s always the concept that really matters to us. (Postscript)

Historical Thesaurus of the Oxford English Dictionary (home screen of the online version)
Historical Thesaurus of the Oxford English Dictionary (home screen of the online version)
Marc Alexander’s tree- map visualization of present-day English in the Historical Thesaurus of the Oxford English Dictionary. Each dot represents a word, and the shade of the dot corresponds to when the word entered the language (darker dots show earlier words). Words are arranged by semantic proximity as indicated in the labels. (In Alan Liu, “The Meaning of the Digital Humanities,” PMLA 128, no. 2 (2013): p. 418
Marc Alexander’s tree- map visualization of present-day English in the Historical Thesaurus of the Oxford English Dictionary. Each dot represents a word, and the shade of the dot corresponds to when the word entered the language (darker dots show earlier words). Words are arranged by semantic proximity as indicated in the labels. (In Alan Liu, “The Meaning of the Digital Humanities,” PMLA 128, no. 2 (2013): p. 418

General interpretive method of text analysis

Text analysis interpretive workflow (slide 7) (Alan Liu)
Text analysis interpretive workflow

Fleuron icon (small)

This is the main course website. There is also a course Canvas site for uploading assignments.
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