Test Assumptions about Syntactic Dependencies within a Text


This recipe takes a text with known syntactic dependencies and explores those using tools such as Word List, Concordance, Co-occurrence and Collocation.

  1. Take an electronic text from a source such as Project Gutenberg;
  2. Generate a word list (sorted by frequency) using the Voyant Corpus Term Frequencies;
  3. Identify words that may be syntactically dependant;
  4. Use a Co-occurrence tool such as TAPoR Co-occurrence Tool to find examples of these word combinations;
  5. Use a Collocation tool such as Voyant Links to generate a list of other relationships.
  • Finding a Text

Possible sources for electronic texts are listed on the Electronic Texts Panel of TAPoR. When preparing text for analysis, you should be aware that academic infrastructure included in the text may obstruct reading the text for its original construction. It may be useful to remove notes and other materials added by subsequent authors from the original work. You can use tools such TAPoR Extract Text to remove added material.

  • Using a Word List

The word list can provide a first clue about the nature of the text. Questions which can be asked of the word list may include:

  1. What are the basic preoccupations of this text?
  2. What is unusual in the text?