Building Belphegor: A Multilingual Electronic Journal using TEI

poster / demo / art installation
  1. 1. Vivien Hannon

    Electronic Text Centre/Academic Computing Services - Dalhousie University

  2. 2. Bruno Roy

    Electronic Text Centre/Academic Computing Services - Dalhousie University

  3. 3. Vittorio Frigerio

    French Dept - Dalhousie University

  4. 4. John Barnstead

    Russian Studies - Dalhousie University

  5. 5. Oriel MacLennan

    Electronic Text Center - Dalhousie University, Library - Dalhousie University

Work text
This plain text was ingested for the purpose of full-text search, not to preserve original formatting or readability. For the most complete copy, refer to the original conference program.

Building Belphegor: A Multilingual Electronic Journal
using TEI


Dalhousie University Electronic Text Centre/Academic
Computing Services


Dalhousie University Electronic Text Centre/Academic
Computing Services


Dalhousie University French Department


Dalhousie University Department of Russian
Studies John.Barnstead@Dal.CA


Dalhousie University Electronic Text Centre/Killam


New York University

New York, NY





Belphegor is the first e-journal to be published at
the Dalhousie University Electronic Text Centre, and has presented
challenges because of its multilingual character. Readers may choose to view
the journal in one of six languages: French, English, German, Portuguese,
Spanish or Italian. Papers published in the journal may be in any one of the
languages; abstracts are offered in more than one language. All information
about the journal itself, the authors, the editorial committee, etc. is
offered in all six languages. Many images presented on the pages have
different versions for each of the languages.
While many e-journals are originally created in HTML, it was decided in this
case to create a single XML-compliant TEI-encoded file for each issue,
containing all the text required for the HTML pages, using entity
definitions for images. A "mock-up" partial set of pages was created in HTML
and used as a sort of design sketch to help with the creation of Belphegor's
TEI template. This template was created keeping in mind that we will be
working on other journals in the future; it can be easily customized.
Using a custom Perl script, a TEI file created using the template is then
converted to a set of HTML files. Another Perl script is used to translate
the TEI file to PDF, creating a version of the journal issue which is
optimised for printing. Using different scripted translators, the TEI
document could later be converted to other formats at the request of the
editors - for example, e-book, LaTeX or Postscript. The journal's appearance
can easily be modified by adjusting the translator script and creating new
graphics if needed.
The search page is designed to take advantage of the TEI markup and allow
readers to search using various criteria; for example, authors' names,
titles of works, dates and places.
As a bonus, we will demonstrate to interested parties an example of the use
of digital media in humanities research in the Kuzmin
Collection, which presents materials associated with the Russian
poet, novelist, dramatist, and composer Mikhail Kuzmin (1872-1936), a key
figure in the development of the twentieth century Russian avant-garde.
Research into neglected aspects of Kuzmin's musical compositions and
settings of his poetry by figures of the "repressed Russian avant-garde" has
been facilitated by use of computer-assisted music transcription. The
Electronic Text Centre allows the presentation of this research to a
widely-scattered scholarly audience at minimal expense, in a much more
useful form than would be possible using traditional forms of publication.
By giving students "hands-on" experience in ongoing scholarly research and
translation, and by providing the means to examine the interrelationships of
poetry, music, and the visual arts, the Dalhousie University Electronic Text
Centre makes a growing contribution to the life of the University and its
mission to serve the community.

If this content appears in violation of your intellectual property rights, or you see errors or omissions, please reach out to Scott B. Weingart to discuss removing or amending the materials.

Conference Info

In review


Hosted at New York University

New York, NY, United States

July 13, 2001 - July 16, 2001

94 works by 167 authors indexed

Series: ACH/ICCH (21), ALLC/EADH (28), ACH/ALLC (13)

Organizers: ACH, ALLC