Cross-Channel Stylistic Exchanges: A Stylometric Approach to the Impact of Mobility and Multilingualism on Medieval Latin Literature (1000–1150)

01 October 2020 → 30 September 2023
Research Foundation - Flanders (FWO)
Research disciplines
  • Humanities
    • Other languages and literary studies not elsewhere classified
Latin literary studies Stylometry Cultural history Medieval history Latin Middle Ages Quantitative Language and text analysis Western Europe
Project description

This project will apply stylometry, the computational analysis of style, to investigate how cross-channel mobility and multilingualism impacted Latin literary style in 1000–1150. Due to the many invasions and colonization in this period, an important religious and intellectual migration took place along the channel, making it a contact zone of literary interchange. England became a polyglot melting pot of cultures where Latin, English, French and Norse competed with one another. In this context the contacts with Flanders, Normandy and the Loire are investigated. Firstly, the stylometric state of the art will be extended to detect how mobility impacted auditive and semantic features of style. Secondly, the implications of cross-channel stylistic exchanges are assessed against a backdrop of Latin losing its literary monopoly and homogeneity, causing diverse Latinities to compete. The third objective is to come to an improved contextual understanding of cross-channel stylistic exchanges through text attribution to mobile authors, the reconstruction of literary networks through stylistic affinities, and an assessment of the agency of a reader’s audience through style registers. As thus, this project will contribute to questions of style, of medieval Latin literature in a time of colonization, and of the authors and readers of Latin literary culture on both sides of the channel in 1000–1150.