Computational Methods for Literary-Historical Textual Studies, 3-5 July 2018

deadline for submissions: 
May 1, 2018
full name / name of organization: 
Gabriel Egan / De Montfort University
contact email: 

The Centre for Textual Studies at De Montfort University in Leicester, England, is running a three-day international conference to  showcase and explore the latest methods for analyzing literary and historical texts using computers. A particular focus will be the ways in which literary and historical scholarship will turn increasingly algorithmic in the future as we invent wholly new kinds of questions to ask of our texts because we have wholly new ways to investigate them. The conference will bring together, and put into fruitful dialogue, scholars using traditional literary and historical methods and those exploring and inventing new computational methods, to their mutual benefit.

Proposals are invited for 20-minute papers on our topic, which might cover such matters as:

* More markup or smarter algorithms?: The future of text analysis.

* Is anything just not computable in literary-historical textual studies, and does it matter?

* Where are we with Optical Character Recognition?

* Are texts Orderly Hierarchies of Content Objects, really?

* Can (should?) one person try to learn traditional and digital methods of textual scholarship?

* XML but not TEI: Using roll-your-own schemas

* New developments in Natural Language Processing

* Regularizing historical spelling variation: Is it necessary? How can we do it?

* Getting started with digital textual analysis: Reports from unwearied beginners

* Is it too easy to get results with computers and too hard to avoid big errors?

* Teaching textual analysis using computers

* Does it matter if non-computational colleagues don't understand our work?

* Showcasing new technologies

* Is digital practice changing textual theories?

* When is a source text digital transcription good enough?

* Teamwork versus lone scholarship: Does working digitally make a difference?

* Where does textual analysis meet digital editing?

The conference is generously funded by the UK's Arts and Humanities Research Council, which includes the provision of eight student bursaries, worth 200 GBP each, to help cover the costs of attending to give a paper. Students wanting to apply for bursaries should indicate so in the paper proposal.

To apply to give a paper, please send the title of the paper and a description (200-300 words) to Prof Gabriel Egan <gegan@dmu.ac.uk>. If you are a student applying for one of the bursaries, please say so in your proposal and add a couple of sentences describing your circumstances in a way that makes us want to give you the bursary.