Love is a common theme in Shakespeare's works. In this paper, we show
how the UCREL Semantic Annotation Scheme (henceforth USAS), a software
program for automatic dictionary-based content analysis, can help us to
explore the semantic field of 'love' within a selection of Shakespeare's
plays. Specifically, we will explore 3 love-tragedies (Othello, Antony
and Cleopatra, and Romeo and Juliet) and 3 love-comedies (A Midsummer
Night's Dream, The Two Gentlemen of Verona and As You Like It) to
determine differences in their (re)presentation of love. We will also
discuss how the semantic field of love co-occurs with different
domains in the plays, and assess the implications this has on our
understanding of love as a concept. This research builds on (i)
Jonathan Culpeper's work on keywords in Shakespeare, using Wordsmith (Culpeper 2002), (ii) Paul Rayson's comparisons of key word and key
domain analysis (Rayson 2003), and (iii) Dawn Archer and Paul Rayson's
work on the identification of key domains in refugee literature, using
USAS (Archer and Rayson forthcoming).
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June 15, 2005 - June 18, 2005
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