Monday, April 28, 2014

Insites on Text Analysis Tools

Here is a word cloud and text analysis that I quick conducted on Voyant Tools for the Edgar Allen Poe short story The Cask of Amontillado. I made a word cloud on Wordle because Voyant would not let me remove the stop words for some reason, the site is fussy sometimes. The story is about a guy sealing his friend in a wine cave after chaining him up when he was all hopped up on wine from the cave. Just from the quick glance at the word cloud and commonly used keywords, I definitely know that the story takes place in a cave, by use of words like catacombs, recess, vaults, and crypt. There is also the use of a great deal of Spanish or Italian words and names, which would make someone determine that the story takes place in one of the two countries, even though we are never really told where they are at.

If someone were to conduct a distant reading on this though, that would be about as far as they get. There is nothing in the Corpus to suggest what the story is about and what the outcome of the story is. So, in reality these are good tools to understand different things within a text, but it is always better to read the text before you dig in and analyze it. Below is some screenshots of Voyant and Wordle.


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