Digital Tools Analysis

As society has become more and more influenced by technology, specifically computers and the internet, people have found new ways to analyze literature using these tools. Digital analysis is interesting, because it takes one of the most basic forms of art, writing, and finds ways to quantify and break it down. It is a much more visual representation of literature that might help people better understand themes in novels. 

Ngram chart

 

Voyant chart

In the two charts above, I analyzed the technology used in Bram Stoker's Dracula. Digital analysis tools like the Google Ngram and Voyant and helpful, because they give you a visual representation of information concerning the frequency of certain words. In the Google Ngram's case, it allows you to see the frequency of words in works printed between 1500 and 2008. This gives the viewer some insight on history and the trends of specific words and ideas. While analyzing Dracula, this was especially helpful, because it gave me a better understanding of what kinds of technology were being used and whether or not they were popular.

Voyant is a very fascinating tool to play around with. It is extremely useful for understanding the plot, because it maps out the most used words in a novel. You can also pick specific words to focus on, which was what I did with "telegraph" and "typewriter." This tool allows you to better understand and highlight themes, as well as what the author and characters value throughout the novel. It could be especially useful for a dynamic character who changes throughout the book, because you would be able to see the change plotted out on a graph.

Digital analysis is extremely useful for literature that has a complicated plot, heavy symbolism, or, in Jane Eyre's case, is on the longer side. Using Jane Eyre as an example, digital analysis is helpful because it allows you to break up the plot into the different stages of her life. Each house that she lives in has different themes and tones, and it becomes much more clear after separating them from each other and organizing them.