Stylometry: Quantitative Investigation Into The Characteristics Of An Author's Style

2261 words - 9 pages

Stylometry is a quantitative investigation into the characteristics of an author’s style. Lann (1995) defines the term as a technique “to grasp the often elusive character of an author's style, or at least part of it, by quantifying some of its features” (1995:271). Matthews and Merriam (1993) agree claiming “Stylometry attempts to capture quantitatively the essence of an individual’s use of language” (1993:203). To put it simply, stylometric analysis is an approach to the investigation of characteristics within literary works through numerical quantitative methods. The relationship between quantitative aspects and literary phenomena is very old. Numerous studies have attempted to explain the stylistic and linguistic properties of authors in terms of quantitative methods and these have been more developed with the availability of computational methods since these methods are accepted by many as more accurate than non-computational ones.
Many scholars (Jockers et al., 2008; Altintas et al., 2007; Burrows, 2007; Burrows, 2005; Paton and Can, 2004; Burrows, 2003; Holmes, 1998; Holmes and Forsyth, 1995; Burrows, 1987) agree that the development of computational methods has enhanced the efficiency and accuracy of stylometric studies since computer systems have capacities for analyzing large quantities of data. In turn, Stylometry is often met by objections from many critics. They argue that the computational approach of Stylometry can never give results that can be universally accepted as definitive. (Delcourt, 1992; Smith, 1992; Smith, 1985). Holmes (1998; 1994) argues that there are two main problems about Stylometry that inhibit its acceptance within humanities scholarship. First, there is no consensus as to correct methodology or technique (Holmes, 1998). Second, “no stylometrist has managed to establish a methodology which is better able to capture the style of a text than that based on lexical items (Holmes, 1994: 87). In the face of such contradictory views, the present study agrees with the results of the many studies indicating that stylometric studies-aided by modern computational tools- have had reasonable success in identifying the linguistic and stylistic characteristics of many authors and even in confirming the results of conventional criticism.
 Stylometry & Multivariate Analysis
Stylometric studies have begun to draw on multivariate analysis techniques for analysis (Binongo and Smith, 1999). The applications of multivariate analysis in stylometric studies date back to the sixties of the 20th century. This was when Mosteller and Wallace (1964), two American statisticians, employed statistical analysis to investigate the mystery of authorship of the Federalist papers in the early 1960s, using function words as discriminators. The approach succeeded in identifying the writers of the Federalist papers who tried to persuade the New York citizens to ratify the constitution (Mosteller and Wallace, 1984; Mosteller and Wallace, 1964)....

Find Another Essay On Stylometry: Quantitative Investigation Into the Characteristics of an Author's Style

An Investigation into the Housing Market

1143 words - 5 pages An Investigation into the Housing Market Economics Describe and analyse the changes of housing in the local area over the last 5 years The housing market is one of the most talked about topics in the news. I assume this is due to the high influential potential it holds to the rest of the economy. In this essay I will focus on the causes in house prices. I will investigate how prices have changed nationally and locally. I

An Investigation Into The Factors Affecting Osmosis

3536 words - 14 pages reliability of the experiment for example at extreme temperatures the cells of the potato may die and at less extreme temperatures the experiment may be speeded up. To keep this from happening, all the test tubes will be kept in the same place and at the same time of the one-hour experiment.Safety procedures:Safety is an important aspect in every experiment, even if the experiment seems to be very harmless. This is why I'll be taking this into

An investigation into the Biggest Loser

2035 words - 8 pages , November 26, 2009) of gruelling and lengthy exercise regimes each day in order to stay on the popular series. A former contestant of The Biggest Loser has slammed the show as "unrealistic" and "unhealthy" following her stint on the reality weight-loss program” ( The Daily Telegraph, January 18, 2010). The latest studies demonstrate that The Biggest Loser had an average audience of 1.58 million viewers and easily won its timeslot in all key

An Investigation into the Identification, Properties, and Synthesis of an Unknown Ionic Compound

1186 words - 5 pages Abstract This paper describes the methods used in the identification, investigation of properties, and synthesis of an unknown compound. The compound was identified as calcium nitrate by a variety of tests. When the compound was received, it was already known to be one of twelve possible ionic compounds. The flame test identified the presence of the calcium anion in the compound. The compound tested positive for the nitrate cation using the

An Investigation into Determining the Relationship between pH and the Oxidation of Ascorbic Acid

3273 words - 14 pages An Investigation into Determining the Relationship between pH and the Oxidation of Ascorbic Acid (C6H8O6) Ajay Mittal Vanguard High School An Investigation into Determining the Relationship between pH and the Oxidation of Ascorbic Acid (C6H8O6) TABLE OF CONTENTS I. Experimental Design 1. Introduction Title

An investigation into the presentation of food science in a variety of non-fiction texts

2201 words - 9 pages ratio of images out of all four of the texts as its target audience is young children. It employs a substantial number of images and a vivid colour scheme it will sustain the audience attention and encourage them to acquire an involvement in food science. The imagines are set up in two different ways: either a comic style layout multiple images in separate boxes. Which tells a story whilst teaching about food science. The other format is a double

An investigation into the presentation of food science in a variety of non-fiction texts

867 words - 4 pages audience attention and encourage them to develop an interest in food science. The imagines are set up in two different ways: either a comic style layout multiple images in separate boxes. Which tells a story whilst teaching about food science.  The other format is a double spread image to attract the audience’s attention towards the with an increased amount of colour and a large amount animation in one picture. Whilst it's attracting attention

An Investigation into Freshmen Student Perceptions of the Effectiveness and Value of Digital and Information Literacy

4860 words - 19 pages transcribed and as with the surveys all text is as it was originally written for authenticity and so as to provide an indication of the English language levels these students possess. In all cases the transcripts (like the survey answers) have also been put into a word cloud generated by Wordle to provide a quick visual interpretation of the students answers and again these are given at the beginning of each interview transcript in the Appendix section

An Investigation into the Relationship between Corporate Diversification and the Performance of Firms

5896 words - 24 pages diversification. As the consequence, our investigation stretch into the area of agent problem. Agent problem is derived from an agent theory, which indicates that there are interest conflicts between managers and shareholder. Consequently, managers pursue diversification strategy for the purpose of achieving their self-interest rather than for create more shareholders' value. As such, the vision of the management in choosing diversification strategy

Comparing and Contrasting the Author's Use of Style in "The Standard of Living" and "The Lesson"

530 words - 2 pages An author's view of human behavior is often reflected in their works. The short stories, The Standard of Living by Dorothy Parker and The Lesson by Toni Cade Bambara are both examples of works that demonstrate their author's view of lifestyles from the past.Parker's The Standard of Living reflects pretence and make-believe. Perhaps the best example of this is demonstrated by the main characters Annabel and Midge who are two young middle-class

The Two Faces of Kim: An Investigation into Rudyard Kipling's Kim

2452 words - 10 pages The Two Faces of Kim: An Investigation into Rudyard Kipling's Kim "I would go without shirts or shoes, Friends, tobacco or bread Sooner than for an instant lose Either side of my head." The Two-Sided Man (Kipling 179) To think of "the two-sided man" is to think of the self-searching protagonist of Rudyard Kipling's Kim. "Burned black" and yet white, Irish and yet 'Little Friend of All the World', British and yet native, ruler and yet

Similar Essays

An Investigation Into The Vocal Trends And Characteristics Of Female Country Singers

3367 words - 13 pages Country music, for the most part, was mainly dominated by male artists for the first thirty years. Country music was viewed as being masculine, and too much of a 'butch' western theme for women to sing. In 1935 though, a woman from Arkansas changed those views. A singer and fiddler named Patsy Montana broke into the country music scene with a song named, 'I want to be a Cowboy's Sweetheart'. This record became the first female, million record

An Investigation Into The Effect Of Enzyme

2633 words - 11 pages visit for free bogusmail.fake mail and book reviews and more! An Investigation Into The Effect Of Enzyme Concentration On The Rate Of Catalase Activity Equation: 2H2O 2 2H2O + O 2 Catalase is used to catalyse this reaction as hydrogen peroxide takes too long to decompose on its own. The source of catalase which I will be using will be from potato.Hypothesis: I believe that as the concentration of enzyme is increased, the

An Investigation Into The Enthalpies Of The Combustion Of Alcohols

5145 words - 21 pages An Investigation into the Enthalpies of the Combustion of Alcohols ================================================================== Planning My aim for this experiment is to see the energy produced from different alcohols. This investigation involves burning alcohol in the air. ‘GCSE Chemistry’ by B.Earl and L.D.R Wilford says that "alcohols form, another homologous series, with the general formula Cn H2n+1OH ". The alcohol reacts

An Investigation Into The Meaningfulness Of Religious Language

2644 words - 11 pages divine nature which are qualitatively completely different from human nature. He possesses attributes and characteristics, which we do not possess, and so have no language to describe in any really adequate way. Words are not able to grasp all of what God is. There are plenty of questions to be asked about this view of religious language: the problem of ambiguity and 'flexibility' in defining terms is certainly an issue, which needs thinking