Reading into the past

Fitzmaurice, S., Robinson, J. A., Alexander, M. , Hine, I. C., Mehl, S. and Dallachy, F. (2017) Reading into the past. In: Säily, T., Nurmi, A., Palander-Collin, M. and Auer, A. (eds.) Exploring Future Paths for Historical Sociolinguistics. Series: Advances in historical sociolinguistics, 7 (7). John Benjamins: Amsterdam, pp. 53-82. ISBN 9789027200860 (doi: 10.1075/ahs.7.03fit)

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The Linguistic DNA project investigates concepts in early modern England and adopts a bottom-up approach to query whether the key concepts intuited by historians of ideas are manifested in the printed discourse of the time. By applying computational methods and close reading to Early English Books Online, we identify concepts that early moderns were discussing, developing and changing. In this article, we discuss the challenge of information retrieval and the negotiation between distant reading and close reading. We present three case studies informed by the project’s three research themes. Research theme 1 examines historical and social contexts of conceptual change. Research theme 2 analyses lexical semantic relationships within conceptual structures. Research theme 3 explores lexicalisation pressure, using categories from the Historical Thesaurus of English.

Item Type:Book Sections
Glasgow Author(s) Enlighten ID:Alexander, Professor Marc and Dallachy, Dr Fraser
Authors: Fitzmaurice, S., Robinson, J. A., Alexander, M., Hine, I. C., Mehl, S., and Dallachy, F.
Subjects:P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
P Language and Literature > PE English
College/School:College of Arts & Humanities > School of Critical Studies > English Language and Linguistics
Publisher:John Benjamins

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Project CodeAward NoProject NamePrincipal InvestigatorFunder's NameFunder RefLead Dept
671731The Linguistic DNA of Modern Thought: Paradigmatic terms in English 1500-1800Marc AlexanderArts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC)AH/M00614X/1CRIT - ENGLISH LANGUAGE & LINGUISTICS