[Humanist] 26.297 social networking in Beowulf, the Iliad & the Ulster Cycle

Humanist Discussion Group willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk
Wed Sep 12 07:23:08 CEST 2012


                 Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 26, No. 297.
            Department of Digital Humanities, King's College London
                       www.digitalhumanities.org/humanist
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        Date: Wed, 12 Sep 2012 06:20:37 +0100
        From: Willard McCarty <willard.mccarty at mccarty.org.uk>
        Subject: social network analysis


A colleague and old friend has alerted me to an article in the NY Times 
describing the work of two scientists who have applied social-network 
analysis methods to ancient stories - Beowulf, Iliad, and the Ulster 
Cycle (Tain Bo Cualinge - Cattle Raid of Cooley). See 
http://www.nytimes.com/2012/09/09/opinion/sunday/the-social-networks-of-myths.html 
for more. The original paper, attached, is Pádrig Mac Carron and Ralph 
Kenna, "Universal Properties of mythological networks", Europhysics 
Letters [EPL] 99 (2012): 28002 
(http://iopscience.iop.org/0295-5075/99/2/28002/pdf/0295-5075_99_2_28002.pdf).
See below for the attachment link.

The aspect that seems interesting to me is the notion of analyzing the 
social links between characters, a kind of structural analysis of basic 
relationships - who is connected to whom - as a general measure of the 
possible historical nature of the story. The authors compare the epics 
to Facebook or whatever example of actual social networks.

Yours,
WM

-----
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-- 
Willard McCarty, FRAI / Professor of Humanities Computing & Director of
the Doctoral Programme, Department of Digital Humanities, King's College
London; Professor, School of Computing, Engineering and Mathematics,
University of Western Sydney; Editor, Interdisciplinary Science Reviews
(www.isr-journal.org); Editor, Humanist
(www.digitalhumanities.org/humanist/); www.mccarty.org.uk/




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