I am pleased to announce that .txtLAB will be collaborating with Prof. Marguerite Deslauriers from the Department of Philosophy at McGill. Our project concerns debates about the equality of the sexes in early modern treatises written by both men and women. This project is an Insight Grant funded by the Social Sciences and Humanities Council of Canada.

Prof. Deslauriers is interested in understanding the terms through which the differences between men and women – and thus the possibility of equality – were established in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries and the way those terms have framed discussions about women’s political status since then. She’s interested in particular in using text mining to see if and how men and women framed sex differently and the different ways ancient sources were marshalled in those debates. We feel this is an excellent case study to show the type of questions that text mining can be good at answering, as well as address underrepresented domains in the field of digital humanities (pre-modern discourses, philosophy, and gender).

I am very much looking forward to working on this project and seeing what we find.