Networks offer a dynamic way to study things (often referred to as ‘nodes’ or ‘vertices’) and the relationships between them (called ‘edges’ or ‘arcs’). Nodes can be anything, from people, places, and books to concepts or words, and they can have attributes like gender or year of publication that you could encode via color, size, or another visual channel to discover patterns. For instance, you might study how character networks differ by genre, gender, or another cateogry, asking questions like how Shakespeare’s characters link to one another differently in the comedies versus the tragedies.
Methods & Tools
“Demystifying Networks, Parts I & 2” by Scott Weingart
“Network Analysis, Plot Theory” by Franco Moretti
Networks: An Introduction by Mark Newman
Networks, Crowds, and Markets by David Easley and Jon Kleinberg
How do I get started?
If you're new to digital humanities and are interested in starting a project, stop by the Franke Family Digital Humanities Laboratory in Sterling Memorial Library during our Office Hours.
We also highly recommend looking at existing digital humanities projects to get a sense for what's possible. In addition to projects at Yale, we recommend checking out projects at other digital humanities centers, including:
- Stanford's Literary Lab
- Northeastern's NULab for Maps, Texts, and Networks
- Maryland's Institute for Tecnology in the Humanities
- DHCommons Projects
In addition to on-campus support, there are also off-campus and online resources that you might try. The following programs all offer opportunities for researchers to learn different digital humanities methods and theoretical approaches:What we offer