Explore Themes within a Text


This exercise uses this Recipe and tools such as frequency list, a word finding service, a concordance and collocationto explore a particular theme within a text.

This exercise applies the recipe to a textual example which is freely available on the internet so you can complete the steps yourself and see the results.

Exercise Steps 
  1. In this example we will use William Shakespeare's Romeo and Juliet and explore the theme of love.
  2. This text is available at MIT.
  3. Use WordNet to generate a list of words related to the theme love.
  4. Submit the term love to WordNet and you should get a list of words similar to:
  5. You can proceed in two different ways at this point. You can generate a word list and see if there are any matches, or you can start searching for the particular words identified by EVA.
  6. To explore the theme, enter each of the synonymous words as search terms using the TAPoR Find Words - Concordance Tool to explore their textual contexts.
  7. Inputting the term love into the concordance tool returns the following result:
  8. Using the TAPoR Find Collocates Tool, with the wildcard 'lov*' to get a list of co-occurring words by frequency. 
  9. Use TAPoR Find Words - Concordance Tool with the words grief and love to explore this subtheme.
  10. Your result should resemble:
  11. Repeat the above step for additional words which help to eleabourate on the subtheme.