Digitising experiences of migration: the development of interconnected letter collections

Lundi 15 décembre 2014 – 10h

DH Seminar with Emma Moreton, Coventry University

In April 2013, with funding from the AHRC, a research network was established to look at ways of improving interconnectivity between existing digital collections of migrant correspondence. Central to this project was the development of a system of correspondence markup to represent the linguistic, structural, discoursal, contextual and physical properties of letters, thus offering different layers of meaning and ‘ways-in’ to the texts.

This presentation will report on work carried out so far. Specifically, it will discuss how emigrant letter projects might move beyond the digitisation stage to exploit text content and enhance usability and searchability.

Further details of the project can be found here: http://www.lettersofmigration.blogspot.com

Emma Moreton

Emma Moreton is a Senior Lecturer in the Department of English and Languages at Coventry University, where she teaches undergraduate and postgraduate modules in stylistics and corpus linguistics. Emma has a BA in literature from De Montfort University, Leicester and an MPhil in corpus linguistics from the University of Birmingham. She is currently in the final year of her PhD, also at the University of Birmingham, where she is looking at the design and annotation of correspondence corpora. Emma was project manager on two JISC funded projects which explored the use of visualisation tools with corpora; she was a member of the academic team on the BT Digital Archives project; and she was Co-Investigator on the AHRC research networking project, “Digitising experiences of migration: the development of interconnected letter collections”, which explored the digitisation and markup of historical emigrant letter collections.

Selected publications

Moreton, E. (forth.) ‘”I hope you will write”: The function of projection structures in a corpus of nineteenth century Irish emigrant correspondence’. Journal of Historical Pragmatics, 16(1).

Alsop, S., Moreton, E. and Nesi, H. (2013) The uses of storytelling in university Engineering lectures. ESP Across Cultures. 10.

Moreton, E. (2012) ‘Profiling the Female Emigrant: A Method of Linguistic Inquiry for Examining Correspondence Collections’. Journal of Gender and History. 24(3), 617-646.

Nesi, H. & Moreton, E. (2012) “EFL/ESL writers and the use of shell nouns”. in Tang, R. (ed) Academic Writing in a Second or Foreign Language: Issues and challenges facing ESL/EFL academic writers in higher education contexts. London: Continuum 126-145.

Moreton, E. (2009) “Restoring the History of the Subaltern: A corpus-informed study of ‘The History of Mary Prince, A West Indian Slave’”. Birmingham Journal of Language and Literature, 1(2), 31-41.

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