Text Mining Early Printed English

Washington University in St. Louis

Joseph Loewenstein

  • Director, Interdisciplinary Project in the Humanities and Professor of English
  • Director, Humanities Digital Workshop
  • Director of Study Abroad

Professor Loewenstein's two most recent books - The Author's Due (2002) and Jonson and Possessive Authorship (2002) - are studies of Early Modern intellectual property, the prehistory of copyright, but he is also extremely interested in prosody and poetics. Most of his scholarly energy is now devoted to an edition of the Complete Works of Edmund Spenser for Oxford University Press, a project in which a number of undergraduates and graduate students, from Arts & Sciences and from Engineering, are involved. But he is also working on a study of the material props of the Self in Early Modern England - spectacles, watches, commonplace books, signet rings, and poems: his working title for this undertaking is "Accessorizing the Renaissance." Professor Loewenstein is also the director of the Interdisciplinary Project in the Humanities. He teaches courses on Shakespeare, Milton, and Spenser; on literature and skepticism; on the cultural poetics of the book; and on the ways writers read. Professor Loewenstein also directs the Humanities Digital Workshop.

Anupam Basu

  • Mark Steinberg Weil Early Career Fellow in Digital Humanities

Anupam Basu is the Mark Steinberg Weil Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Interdisciplinary Project in the Humanities and the Humanities Digital Workshop at Washington University in Saint Louis. His current research on the representation of crime and social change in Tudor and Stuart literature explores the popular representation of criminality, poverty, and vagrancy in the period. While such an investigation must necessarily be grounded in a close reading of a wide array of texts, his computational work seeks to expand the horizon of analysis beyond the limits rogue-literature and city-comedy to trace the evolution of the literary criminal through a vast archive of early modern print that the EEBO-TCP corpus makes available. The analysis of literary language at such scale presents unique conceptual and computational challenges that are even more pronounced in the case of EEBO-TCP due to the wide range of variation in early modern grammar and orthography. Drawing on emerging computational techniques including natural language processing and machine-learning, Anupam's project seeks to make this vast corpus more tractable for computational analysis.

Doug Knox

  • Associate Director, Humanities Digital Workshop

Douglas Knox joined Washington University in St. Louis as assistant director of the Humanities Digital Workshop in November 2011. Prior to that he was Director of Publication and Digital Initiatives at the Newberry Library in Chicago. He was managing editor of the Encyclopedia of Chicago (2004) and directed an NEH-funded project to create a full-text digital version of the Chicago Foreign Language Press Survey.

Stephen Pentecost

  • Senior Digital Humanities Specialist, Humanities Digital Workshop

Stephen Pentecost develops software applications, administers servers, manages data, and mentors student fellows, all in support of faculty research projects in the humanities. His skill set includes the full LAMP stack and its accompanying browser toolset, although he prefers python to php, and can develop in Java when necessary. Applications he's developed include custom web-based user interfaces, dynamic data visualizations, text mining processes, and relational and no sql web front ends and batch processes. He was educated at St. Louis Community College, Forest Park (A.A.S.); University of Missouri St Louis (B.A.); and Washington University in St. Louis (M.A.). Before he rejoined Washington University, he was employed at Edward Jones, General American Life Insurance Company, and United Van Lines.