Faculty Lecture Series - Mark Wolff

Hartwick’s Wolff Presents Fourth Installment in Faculty Lecture Series

December 2, 2013

Associate Professor of French Dr. Mark Wolff will present a talk titled "Reading with Machines: Exploring Large Document Collections with Computational Tools" during the fourth lecture of the 2013-14 Faculty Lecture Series. The event will take place on Thursday, December 5 at 12:30 p.m. in Bresee Hall's Eaton Lounge. The lecture is free and the public is invited to attend.

Given that Google and other online text repositories offer an ever-increasing number of literary and historical documents that can be easily downloaded, how can readers begin to make sense of all this data? By availing themselves of computational tools for text analysis. It is possible to use computational tools with a large collection of scanned texts to get a sense of its themes, recurrent rhetorical devices, innovators, and imitators. It is also possible to distinguish verse from prose using algorithms that have no sense of word choice, rhyme or meter. The lecture will feature some recent experiments in distant reading as an approach to studying literature on a macro scale.

Throughout the lecture series, faculty members discuss recent research in their fields, focusing on physics, politics, religion, art, economics, biology, psychology and more.

Upcoming lectures in the series (subject to change) include:

Wednesday, February 19, 2014
Professor of English Dr. David Cody: "'One last and horrible scream': Hawthorne's Science Fictions"

Thursday, March 13, 2014
Professor of History Dr. Peter Wallace, "The Finninger Affair: The Imperial City of Mulhouse (Alsace) Suspended between the Swiss Confederation and the Holy Roman Empire: 1580-1602"

Wednesday, April 9, 2014
Visiting Assistant Professor of Chemistry Dr. Sanjeewa Gamagedara: "Investigation of Biomarkers for Non-Invasive Early Diagnosis of Cancer"

Thursday, May 8, 2014
Assistant Professor of Political Science Dr. Sara Rinfret: "Engaging Students in Environmental Policymaking"

For more information, contact Assistant Professor of Political Science and Faculty Development Acting Chair Dr. Matthew Voorhees at 607-431-4387 or

* * * * * * * * * * * * *

Hartwick College is a private liberal arts and sciences college of 1,500 students, located in Oneonta, NY, in the northern foothills of the Catskill Mountains. Hartwick's expansive curriculum emphasizes an experiential approach to the liberal arts. Through personalized teaching, collaborative research, a distinctive January Term, a wide range of internships, and vast study-abroad opportunities, Hartwick ensures that students are prepared for not just their first jobs, but for the world ahead. A Three-Year Bachelor's Degree Program and strong financial aid and scholarship offerings keep a Hartwick education affordable.

Contact: Valerie Capullo
Phone: 607-431-4031