Laurie Epps

January 30, 2016

Lab 1:  Dr. Thomas

10 Sample Works:

  1. The Tragedy of Macbeth. <>.

Homepage: <>.


  1. “A Worn Path” by Eudora Welty from The Collected Works of Eudora Welty.


Homepage: American Studies at the University of Virginia

  1. Dutch Fairy Tales for Young Folks by William Elliot Griffis. Project Gutenberg
  1. The Parent’s Assistant; or Stories for Children. 2nd, London: Printed for J. Johnson in St. Paul’s Church-Yard. 1796. <>.
Homepage:  University of Oxford Text Archive <>.  
  1. The Complete Novels of Jane Austen by Jane Austen. <>.
The Open Library <>.  
  1. Leaves of Grass by Walt Whitman. <>. The Open Library
  1. A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens.
<>. Project Gutenberg <>  
  1. A Child’s History of England by Charles Dickens.
<>. Project Gutenberg <>
  1. The Importance of Being Earnest: A Trivial Comedy for Serious People by Oscar Wilde.
<>. Project Gutenberg <>  
  1. Etiquette by Emily Post. <>.
Project Gutenberg <>   Books Chosen for Mini-Corpus: Children’s Lit 1. Celtic Fairy Tales by Joseph Jacobs 2. The Laughing Prince: Jugoslav Folk and Fairy Tales by Parker Fillmore 3. Irish Fairy Tales by James Stephens 4. Dutch Fairy Tales for Young Folks by William Elliot Griffis 5. Viking Tales by Jennie Hall 6. The Children of Odin: The Book of Northern Myths by Padrais Colum 7. Myths Every Child Should Know Mable, Hamilton Wright 8. The Firelight Fairy Book by Henry Beston 9. American Fairy Tales by L. Frank Baum 10. Stories the Iroquois Tell Their Children by Mabel Powers How will I divide these:  Origin, Date, Author, Genre, Anthology or Single Work, Publisher, Organizing Principle? Regions of the World/Cultural Context Report: My mini-corpus is made of select pieces of children’s literature.  I chose this because I took Children’s Literature in undergrad and there are usually a great amount of pieces to consider.  I pulled adult novels from the fiction category in the beginning but couldn’t narrow my results into a more defined category.  This selection of pieces in the same category was easier to sift through and certainly of personal interest.  Additionally, many of the texts in the children’s category include illustrations, which make for a more visual exploration.  My metadata fields included the basic template headings—author’s last and first name, author birthdate and date of decease, an ID number, title, date of publication (which was often unavailable) and genre—most in folk and fairy, although some listed as mythology.  I also chose to include Origin as a heading because so many of these published tales for children originate from different places and identifying culture is essential to these publications. One major problem I ran into was that of publication dates—most were not available.  I searched other online venues (Amazon, BAM, etc.) and found them not listed on there as well.  I am curious to know that if the date is, in fact, unknown, the data field has no other option but to be left blank.  Searching for dates was quite frustrating.  I’m supposing that many of the books I chose to incorporate into my corpus are not as well documented as those of more canonical status. I am positive any researcher of literary data comes across a vast amount of trial and error in compiling data.  For me, I tended to wander off into other areas of interest or down the path of an author’s background. I would have to refocus on what my task at hand included.  It seems distraction can be overwhelming, however, maybe in a good way. Collecting literary data can be intriguing but time consuming.  Quite frankly, it’s amazing to know the text and illustrations that are available through a keystroke, but it’s difficult to imagine how the data that I organized could be used in a constructive, literary way.  It seems like it’s only ‘data’—bits and pieces of information that describe the object of the text instead of the text interpretation itself.  I cannot imagine using this data to construct a meaningful understanding of the chosen children’s texts, except for through the origin. For me, that is a struggle to understand the concept fully. In further examination of the corpus, I could certainly see building onto it with more detail and categories. For example, you could surely build on to the works of children’s text accordingly to their country of origin and quite possible the language in which it was originally printed. You could expand the country of origin into more detailed cultural information columns to better enhance the text or even author’s background information. If I had the necessary tools, I could categorize the selections into ‘best for age groups’. That would be very helpful for educators and parents. In careful examination of the books themselves, I could having a heading that listed a count of the actual tales included in each piece and the page length of each piece in the anthologies. As a researcher, you could also have a column in regards to if it is available in print any longer or in what formats it might be available. For educators of children, you could even include whether the pieces included certain quality information—like hymnals, Biblical references, male or female heroes, literary elements, etc. In conclusion, I am struggling to find my niche in examining literature through the extraction of literary data. For myself, I learn and remember material so much better if I’m working with it hands-on—with pencil and paper, sifting through shelves of books—the ones I can hold and take with me.  I learn through hours of quiet silence and sorting piles, through dog-eared pages and coffee stained paragraphs.  So for me, the collection of the data itself was a relatively interesting task but one that I have trouble seeing being accessibly productive in my literary interpretations.