Alex Steer

Better communication through data / about / archive

Notes on work in progress

205 words | ~1 min

I'm working on a few language-related things of possible general interest at the moment. One is for this blog, and is intended in follow-up to this post (and this follow-up) on Language Log, relating to the history of the meaning of the controversial phrase 'to bear arms' (in the Second Amendment to the US Constitution). As far as I know no historical lexicographers have got seriously involved in this yet, and it deserves a more detailed treatment than it's had so far.

The other, not for publication here yet (because it's for publication elsewhere), is a corpus-based analysis of the changing profile of philanthropy in the UK press over the last five years. Some fairly brute-force searches are already turning up some interesting patterns, though I've got a lot to do to refine them. All being well, I'll post here sometime in the next few months on the results and the methodology used for this.

I'm also doing some research on the history of the word 'charity', though I'm not saying what for (yet, anyway).

# Alex Steer (26/06/2008)