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9/11 Digital Dialogue: Tanya Clement, “Using Digital Tools to Not-Read Gertrude Stein’s The Making of Americans”

A MITH Digital Dialogue

Tuesday, September 11, 12:30-1:45

MITH Conference Room, McKeldin Library B0135

“Using Digital Tools to Not-Read Gertrude Stein’s The Making of Americans

by TANYA CLEMENT

The difficulties engendered by the complicated patterns of repetition in Gertrude Stein’s 900-page novel _The Making of Americans_ make it is almost impossible to read this modernist tome in a traditional, linear manner as any page (most are startlingly similar) will show. However, by visualizing certain of its patterns–by looking at the text “from a distance”–through textual analytics and visualizations, one can read the novel in ways formerly impossible and re-evaluate whether there is or is not “a there there.” This talk will focus on how various analytic methods (such as text mining and frequent pattern recognition) and visualization tools (such as FeatureLens and Spotfire) under research in the MONK project (http://www.monkproject.org/) have been used to achieve a new *non*-reading of the text which Stein called her “masterpiece” and critiques called “linguistic murder.”

TANYA CLEMENT is an English PhD candidate at the University of Maryland, College Park. Her focus of study is textual and digital studies as it pertains to applied humanities computing and modernist American literature. She has an M.F.A. in fiction from the University of Virginia, where she was also trained in humanities computing at the Electronic Text Center and the Institute for Advanced Technology in the Humanities. At the University of Maryland, she has been a Program Associate at the Maryland Institute for Technologies in the Humanities and project manager for the Dickinson Electronic Archives (www.emilydickinson.org). Presently, she is a graduate assistant in the Office of Digital Collections and Research and a research associate for MONK (Metadata Offer New Knowledge at www.monkproject.org), a Mellon-funded project which seeks to integrate existing digital library collections and large-scale, cross-collection text mining and text analysis with rich visualization and social software capabilities.

Coming up @MITH 9/18, Chris Funkhouser (Dept. of Humanities, New Jersey Institute of Technology): “Digital Poetry as Scrabble: Making From Given Materials”

View MITH’s complete Fall Speakers Schedule here:

http://www.mith2.umd.edu/programs/mith_speakers_fall_2007.pdf

All talks free and open to the public!

Contact: Neil Fraistat, Director, MITH (www.mith.umd.edu, mith@umd.edu, 5-8927).