Lexomics is a collaboration with Wheaton College, MA, in which faculty and students develop and apply computational methods to study literature. The term “lexomics” was originally used to describe the computer-assisted detection of “words” (short sequences of bases) in genomes, but we have reversed the metaphor to apply it to the detection of patterns in linguistic texts, particularly those that are too subtle or diffuse to be perceived easily. We then use the results derived from statistical and computer-based analysis to augment traditional literary approaches including close reading, philological analysis, and source study. We use traditional methods to identify problems that can be addressed in new ways by lexomics, and we also use the results of lexomic analysis to help us zero in on textual relationships or portions of texts that might not previously have received much attention.
The project‘s research has a strong emphasis on the study of early literature and on literature in languages that do not use the Roman alphabet. It also attempts to make the theory and application of computational text analysis accessible to students and other newcomers to this approach through its Lexos text analysis software. Lexos is a web-based tool to help users explore digitized texts by means of a simple interface to a workflow of effective practices. Lexos may be used online or downloaded from our GitHub repository.
Lexomics has received past support from multiple grants from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
If you would like to support this project, please contact Suren Seropian, Director of Development, College of Humanities (firstname.lastname@example.org).