Publication details [#13669]

Ramsay, Stephen. 2003. Special Section: Reconceiving Text Analysis: Toward an Algorithmic Criticism. 8 pp.
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Computer-assisted text analysis is often portrayed as opposed to other forms of literary enquiry, as a medium which on the one hand allows a comparative safety, provided by the indisputableness of quantitative data, and on the other hand is limited by the difficulty in giving an objective interpretation of said data. This paper attempts at redefining the role of algorithmic criticism, finding common ground between computer-assisted text analysis and ludic methods in light of their shared search for pattern and recurrence, which are then re-articulated into “meaning” through a narrative form defined as “interpretation.” As algorithmic criticism focuses the attention on the creation of said pattern, it could overcome scholarly reticence in exposing the transformations at the core of narratives of meaning, and at the same time provoking thought and allowing valuable insight.