Phylomemetic and phylogenetic approaches in the humanities
University of Bern, Switzerland
Tutorial: Thursday/Friday, Nov. 22nd/23rd 2012
Workshop: Saturday, Nov. 24th 2012
The analysis of large sets of genetic data has a long tradition in biology. In recent years, methods developed in this field have also been successfully applied in the humanities, including linguistics (e.g. Warnow and Nichols 2008; McMahon and McMahon 2005), literary studies (e.g. Windram, Shaw, Robinson and Howe 2008) and anthropology (e.g. Tehrani, Collard and Shennan 2010). In these disciplines, phylogenetic methods have been used for the visualisation and analysis of data ranging from parallel texts and cognate word lists over manuscript traditions to diverse types of cultural artefacts.
In order to advance these methods and discuss their application, we are holding a three-day event composed of a tutorial and a workshop.
The tutorial on Nov 22/23 offers an hand-on introduction to phylogenetic methods for interested advanced students and researchers. The tutorial is based on genuine data sets used in the study of manuscript tradition (stemmatology) and linguistics (parallel texts and dialectological data). It is lead by:
Heather Windram (Cambridge University, Biology Department; stemmatological data)
Christoph Wolk (FRIAS, Freiburg University; linguistic data)
If you would like to participate, please register by October 20, 2012. For more details, choose the tutorial page to the right.
In the workshop on the next day, Nov 24, we would like to bring together both junior researchers and established specialists from different disciplines to discuss and exchange ideas about applications, benefits and limitations of "phylomemetics” (Howe and Windram 2011) in different disciplines and with different types of data in the humanities.
List of invited speakers:
- Teemu Roos (Computer science / stemmatology, University of Helsinki)
- Michael Cysouw (Linguistic typology / historical linguistics, Philipps-Universität Marburg)
- Jamie Tehrani (Anthropology, University of Durham)
- Balthasar Bickel (General linguistics, University of Zurich)
If you would like to participate with a paper, please send your abstract by October 16, 2012 (deadline extended). For more details, please visit the workshop page to the right.
McMahon and McMahon (2005), Language Classification by Numbers. OEP
Nichols and Warnow (2008), Tutorial on Computational Linguistic Phylogeny. Language and Linguistics Compass, 2: 760–820.
Windram, Shaw, Robinson, Howe (2008): Dante's Monarchia as a test case for the use
of phylogenetic methods in stemmatic analysis. LLC 23(4): 443-463.
Tehrani, Collard and Shennan (2010), The cophylogeny of populations and cultures: reconstructing the evolution of Iranian tribal craft traditions using trees and jungles. Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society 365(1559): 3865-3874.
Howe and Windram (2011): Phylomemetics – evolutionary analysis beyond the gene. PLoS Biology 9: 1-5.