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Research Article

A Brief History of the Theory and Practice of Computational Literary Criticism (1963-2020)

Chris Beausang    Maynooth University, Ireland    



This paper will construct a history of computational literary criticism (CLS) which has engaged statistical methods by providing an historical account of the journal articles as well as other publications which have advanced the field to the most significant extent since 1963. This paper divides the history of CLS into three distinct epochs, within each of which the methods and theories CLS scholars utilise undergo significant qualitative transformation. The decisive factor in each of these epochs is CLS’ relationship to traditional literary criticism. Partly as a result of this, CLS scholarship initially cleaves to organic theories of literary style and adopts a highly polemicised opposition to then-regnant post-structuralist theories of authorship.

Keywords: Computational literary criticism. Literary criticism. Digital humanities. Delta. Machine learning.

Language: en

Submitted: Oct. 9, 2020
Accepted: Nov. 2, 2020
Published: Dec. 22, 2020

permalink: http://doi.org/10.30687/mag/2724-3923/2020/02/002

Creative Commons License This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License