Wmatrix and Poetry

Still on my quest of looking at corpus linguistics and poetry, I became interested in the Wmatrix software developed by Paul Rayson at Lancaster University, UK. http://ucrel.lancs.ac.uk/wmatrix/

I’m particularly interested in the semantic tagging capabilities of this software and thought I would share some early results.

First of all, I loaded the poem to look at the semantic fields, and obtained this:

semantic tagging

From there, I started to look at the concordance lines for each semantic field, start with the most prominent, ‘Anatomy and physiology’:

semantic tagging anatomy


By being able to arrange the concordance lines into such a set, the authors focus and intentions become much more visible.

The next most prominent semantic group is ‘light’, which contained the following concordance lines:

semantic tagging light


The inclusiveness expressed in these lines is quite prominent.

Semantic tagging! I’ll keep digging.


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