Quantitative text analysis refers tothe application of one or more methods for drawingstatistical inferences from text populations. Afterbriefly distinguishing quantitative text analysisfrom linguistics, computational linguistics, andqualitative text analysis, issues raised during the1955 Allerton House Conference are used as a vehiclefor characterizing classical text analysis as aninstrumental-thematic method. Quantitative textanalysis methods are then depicted according to a2 × 3 conceptual framework in which texts areinterpreted either instrumentally (according to theresearcher's conceptual framework) orrepresentationally (according to the texts' sources'perspectives), as well as in which variables arethematic (counts of word/phrase occurrences),semantic (themes within a semantic grammar), ornetwork-related (theme- or relation-positions withina conceptual network). Common methodological errorsassociated with each method are discussed. Thepaper concludes with a delineation of the universeof substantive answers that quantitative text analysisis able to provide to social science researchers.
Quality & Quantity – Springer Journals
Published: Oct 16, 2004
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