Get started with ‘Edinburgh Ladies’ Debating Society’ with this Jupyter Notebook.
Whether or not you have experience programming or working with data, this Notebook will give you a starting point for analysing digitised text. Using Python and several of its libraries, including Pandas and Natural Language Toolkit (NLTK), the Notebook demonstrates how to:
– Load a folder of text (.TXT) files as a corpus
– Group the files into their two publications: The Attempt and Ladies’ Edinburgh Magazine
– Ask questions about the words and sentence structure of the publications’ text
– Identify people, places, and other named entities in the publications
Questions this Notebook can help you begin investigating include:
– How similar or different is the vocabulary used in the two publications?
– Who is named in the publications?
– What topics are written about in the publications?
– Which topics were written about with more or less detail as the years passed?
If you have never used a Jupyter Notebook before, we recommend visiting Tim Sherratt’s introduction to Jupyter Notebooks.
A note on the data
The text used in Exploring Ladies’ Edinburgh Debating Society was digitised with Optical Character Recognition (OCR) and has not been manually corrected. As a result, certain words and numbers may not be accurately represented. For example, ‘The’ may appear as ‘Tlie’. Analysis conducted in the Notebook should thus be viewed as estimates and a guide for further research.
Additionally, due to the historical nature of the dataset (the publications included were published as early as 1865), its language may include terms or sentiments that are considered inappropriate today. The language of the publications does not reflect the values of the National Library of Scotland. Rather, the language of the publications reflects historical values that offer insight on historical perceptions of places and people.
Access the Notebook
Explore Edinburgh Ladies’ Debating Society in one of three ways:
View in your browser
Open a static version of the Notebook in your browser.
Run an interactive version
Run an interactive version of the Notebook in Binder.
Please note that the interactive version may take several minutes to load.
Some code may not work fully when opened in Binder.
Download from GitHub
Download from GitHub to run locally on your machine with Jupyter Lab, Anaconda, or Miniconda.
Cite this Notebook
Dataset creator: National Library of Scotland
Dataset publisher: National Library of Scotland
Publication year: 2020
Suggested citation: National Library of Scotland. Exploring Edinburgh Ladies’ Debating Society. National Library of Scotland, 2020. https://doi.org/10.34812/0d3w-zt02
Which dataset did this project use?
This project used Edinburgh Ladies’ Debating Society: Edinburgh Ladies’ Debating Society on the Data Foundry Website