20 Oct 201812:30pm - 1:30pmRoom S1, Alison Richard Building, 7 West Road, Cambridge CB3 9DT

Description

This event is part of the Cambridge Festival of Ideas. Bookings will open at 11:00 on Monday 24 September 2018.

Recently, lexicographers have begun to use computational methods to get a picture of a word's meaning through its use. This is straightforward for concrete everyday objects and actions, but abstract political and social concepts have complex meanings that often differ according to the perspective or ideology of those using them. Talk by members of the 'Concept Lab' a linguistics research group.

Researchers in political theory and intellectual history often focus on understanding social and political concepts in their linguistic context. Such studies primarily consist in close reading of primary texts produced by historical figures, academics, intellectuals, and politicians, in addition to consideration of the social and cultural contexts of their time and place. In recent years, lexicographers have begun to make use of computational methods to get an overall picture of a word's meaning through its use. This is straightforward enough for concrete everyday objects and actions, but abstract political and social concepts have complex contested meanings that often differ according to the perspective or ideology of those using them. This talk explains and demonstrates how the Concept Lab uses digital methods to augment the contextual approach in intellectual history, using examples from ideologically distinct social media communities on twitter and reddit. We investigate how aspects of conceptual structure that seem peripheral or extreme in one community may form part of a conceptual core in another. With Dr Paul Nulty.

Please note that this event might be photographed, recorded and/or filmed, and that the photographs, recordings and/or videos will be made available in all manner of media, including on the Internet. 

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