Blog Post: The use of the Voyant tool allowed me the opportunity to see different trends in the different sections of the novel. It was extremely useful because without machine assisted reading, there is too much content packed in each individual section to truly evaluate and notice. One detail that was apparent through regular reading, but quantified and magnified by machine assisted reading, is how centric both Hailey and Sam’s main texts are towards each other. Hailey’s main text uses Sam’s name 410 times while Sam’s main text features 348 instances of Hailey’s name occurring. In comparing both main texts it is interesting to notice how the most frequent words of both texts are identical with nearly matching numbers (with the exception of the names), this strongly supports the mirror-like tendency that is picked up while reading the novel. The chronologies of both perspectives when inserted into the Voyant tool is interesting in that the cirrus reads heavily of war terms and nationalistic and political ideologies. When reading page by page, this focus of war and politics in the chronologies is apparent but easy to ignore/minimalize. Using machine-assisted reading, the terms are compiled and arranged in a way that makes it clear how significant these ideas are to the text. The occurrences of various country names and the boldness of words such as “troops,” “army,” “strike,” and “million” (which encompasses the vastness of the topic) are all made readily accessible to the reader in a way that paints the picture better than reading the novel in a traditional fashion. The stream-of-conscience style of Only Revolutions paired with the split presentation of the page layouts of the novel make it complex and quite frankly, confusing to read through in a traditional manner. With machine assisted reading, it becomes less of a jumbled mess and it is easier to pick out and identify a direction in which to focus the reader’s analysis on. The biggest benefit that I have seen through this machine assisted reading is the ability to clearly identify integral themes and key points that would go unnoticed without it. In the case of Only Revolutions, the only way true, efficient close reading can be done is through machine-assisted reading because that is the only way to track the progression and flow of the text for patterns without becoming lost in all of the content.
Final Project Scholarly Paper Prospectus:
For the Final Project, I intend to do an analysis of the chronology presented in the texts of both Sam and Hailey. The particular details of the chronology that I want to analyze cover why certain events are chosen to be written in the margins and the connections that lie between each of these various events and moments presented. In order to select my connecting themes, I will use the Voyant program in order to select the more common words (for example the war and political words discussed in the blog post) in order to craft a response as to what they mean towards the overall text. The contrast between the ideological and political nature of the events in the chronology and the naturalistic descriptions provided in the main text provide an interesting look into the human consciousness and how outside events occurring in the world around them affect their thoughts/outlooks. I will cover the chronology presented in both Sam and Hailey’s sides of the novels and will tie in the themes of the chronology with themes that I can identify from the main texts.