"Bilingual stylometry: A computational study of the Arabic-Latin textual tradition."
Kontaktadresse an der Universität Würzburg:
Lehrstuhl Pilosophie III: Geschichte der Philosophie
Institut für Philosophie
Residenz - Südflügel
Erstbetreuer: Prof. Dr. Dag Nikolaus Hasse
Klasse in der Graduiertenschule: "Digital Humanities"
Promotion in der Graduiertenschule ab WS 2019/2020.
The late medieval translation of scientific and philosophical texts from Arabic into Latin heavily influenced the history of European thought for many centuries. This transmission of knowledge was mediated by translators, many of whom remained anonymous, while others, e.g. Gerhard of Cremona or Dominicus Gundissalinus, are appreciated as important historical figures. The ongoing digitisation of the texts facilitates innovative ways of analysis, leading to new insights into their work.
The first part of the dissertation will deal with the digitisation methods employed in building the bilingual corpus. A special focus will be placed on the problem of the alignment of the Arabic original and the Latin translation. I will evaluate existing methods, develop new technologies building on neural machine translation, and compare them with more traditional approaches, using the Arabic and Latin translations corpus and, for comparison, text collections in other languages.
The main part will be devoted to the problem of translator identification using stylometric methods. To compensate for the often very short tractates and large range of subject matters of the texts, I will employ the information gained from the bilingual alignment to filter the stylistic signature of the translator from the statistical properties of language-use in the corpus.
The philological aim of the dissertation therefore is to gain new perspectives on the history of the Arabic-Latin translation movement. From the methodological point of view, the work will seek new strategies to analyse bilingual corpora, especially concerning techniques of stylometry.