ERIC Number: ED030322
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1969-Apr
Reference Count: 0
A Computer-Aided Technique for Stylistic Discrimination; The Authorship of "Greene's Groatsworth of Wit." Final Report.
Austin, Warren B.
Who wrote "The Groatsworth of Wit?" Was it Greene, as hitherto believed, or Chettle? To distinguish between the two writers' styles, and thereby determine the authorship of a 16th Century literary work of particular interest to Shakespearean scholars, computer-aided techniques were employed. The two authors' differing practices in word choice and other linguistic variables were collected, computated, and analyzed. The vocabularies in their other writings were organized by electronic data processing in the form of verbal indices, concordances, and order-of-frequency lists, and were then compared to a similar analysis of the language in "The Groatsworth of Wit." A great deal of objective evidence in precisely quantified form emerged to testify to Chettle's authorship and forgery of the "Groatsworth." The procedure used has important implications for studies in style and may be applied to advantage in undergraduate and graduate studies, providing, as it does, a way of identifying, surely and verifiably, distinctive stylistic traits of a noted author, and producing ample evidence for their observation and study. Appendices provide documentation. (GO)
Publication Type: N/A
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Education (DHEW), Washington, DC. Bureau of Research.
Authoring Institution: Stephen F. Austin State Univ., Nacogdoches, TX.