Wednesday, April 27, 2011

NEH Supports Lexomics

We got the grant!

I guess third time was the charm.  The National Endowment for the Humanities has fully funded our Lexomics project for the next two years (project total $178,000).  We will be expanding lexomic analysis from just Old English (though we will be continuing this research) to medieval Latin, Middle English, and texts from the Harlem Renaissance, and we will be collaborating with Shawn Christian (Harlem Renaissance), Sarah Downey (Latin), Yvette Kisor (Old English, Beowulf) and Scott Kleinman (Old and Middle English, approaches to computational lemmatization).  It's going to be an exciting two years.   

Very soon we will have available on the lexomics website ( a tool called "Divi-text," which allows people to upload any electronic text and cut it into chunks (in preparation for lexomic analysis).  In the next year or so we will also complete the "dendro-grammer," which will enable researchers to produce their own dendrograms without having to learn how to use the statistical analysis software, R. 

In July our team's first article in a major journal will appear:

Michael D.C. Drout, Michael J. Kahn, Mark D. LeBlanc and Christina Nelson, "Of Dendrogrammatology: Lexomic Methods for Analyzing the Relationships Among Old English Poems," JEGP 110 (2011): 301-36. 

Some time after that another article from the research group will appear in Modern Philology:

Sarah Downey, Michael D.C. Drout, Michael J. Kahn and Mark D. LeBlanc, "'Books Tell Us': Lexomic and Traditional Evidence for the Sources of Guthlac A."

Currently work is ongoing on the Cynewulfian corpus (though some of that is in the JEGP article), Beowulf, Bede's Ecclesiastical History, the Old English translation of Orosius, King Horn, and Mule Bone by Zora Neale Hurston and Langston Hughes.

I will post links to software and papers.