ENG287H1, Fall 2011
All lectures Wednesdays, 7-9pm
MS 3154
Instructor: Adam Hammond
Office: JHB 701
Office Hours: Tuesdays, 3-5pm
E-mail: adam.hammond@utoronto.ca

il miglior fabbri...

Current Notices

Course Description

Ours is the first generation to study literature in the digital age. E-books are outselling paperbacks; online scholarly databases are superseding library stacks; new works are being composed, distributed, and consumed electronically. How fundamental is this shift toward digitization? How does it affect the nature of the literary text, and how does it impact our work as readers and critics?

This course explores the interpretive possibilities opened up by the proliferation of digital literary texts. We will use computer-assisted analysis and visualization to ask new questions about literature and to provide statistical grounds for answers to older questions—and we will learn how to integrate our findings meaningfully into our writing. By studying the technical foundations for the production of digital texts, and by collaborating in the production of a “class-sourced” electronic edition, we will learn how the encoding of literary texts affects the questions we can ask of them. By analyzing digital-born fiction—works that involve the reader directly through elements of gaming and interactivity—we will question how such texts alter the role of the interpreter and affect the task of interpretation.

Students will gain hands-on experience with and develop skills in quantitative textual analysis and text encoding with TEI. No programming experience is required.

Required Books

Marshall McLuhan's The Medium is the Massage (Gingko) is available from the University of Toronto Bookstore.

All other texts available online. (Links from syllabus below.)


Date Tutorial Lecture
Sep. 14 (None)


Sep. 21 (None)

Marshall McLuhan, The Medium is the Massage

Sep. 28 The Medium is the Massage

Computer-Assisted Textual Analysis

Oct. 5 Computer-Assisted Textual Analysis

Rescuing Texts That Weren't Happy As Printed Books

Oct. 12 Rescuing Texts

Computer-Assisted Historical Research

Oct. 19 Assignment #1 Due. Historical Research.

Computer-Assisted Stylistic Analysis.

Oct. 26 Stylistic Analysis

Introduction to TEI

Nov. 2 TEI

Major Archives and TEI in Action

Introduction to Digital-Born Fiction.

Nov. 9

TEI and Archives. Digital-Born Fiction.

Stephen Marche, Lucy Hardin's Missing Period.

Nov. 16 Assignment #2 Due. Lucy Hardin.

Lucy Hardin's Missing Period. Peroxide Comics, Escape from Friend Zone. Kate Pullinger and Chris Joseph, Inanimate Alice.

  • Guest: Stephen Marche
Nov. 23 Inanimate Alice, Essay Strategies.

Inanimate Alice.

Nov. 30 Short Essay Due. Exam strategies.

The Digital Text and Publishing Today

Exam Review and Presentation of "Class-Sourced Edition"


Assignment #1: 15%
Assignment #2: 15%
Short essay (1250-1500 words): 25%
Participation in tutorial: 10%
Final examination: 35%