The Gender Novels Project


Dunning Analysis

The code used for this analysis can be found in dunning.py under the analysis folder.

The statistical model used to analyze the distinctiveness of words is called Dunning Log-Likelihood, and it calculates how distinct a word is in its in one corpus compared to another corpus. For example, it can be used to compare male authors to female authors or 19th century novels to 20th century novels. It is also a very effective way to analyze the word usage of authors, as it returns words that are not only distinctive by sheer amount but show a clear significantly distinctive. This means that words with relatively low frequencies can still receive high dunning scores when compared to the rest of the words in their respective corpus. The function dunnindividualword applies the mathematical formula used in Dunning Log-Likelihood and returns a dunning value for that specific word. As inputs, it takes in the total amount of words in both counter objects, and it also takes in the total counts of the desired word in their respective counters.

How to Use dunning_total

All that is needed to run dunning_total is two counter or dict objects (counter1 and counter2), mapping words to the number of times they appear. When the function is run, it will execute dunn_individual_word on all of the common words in both counters. It will then return a dictionary that maps each word to a dict containing its dunning score as well as the counts and frequencies with which it appears in both corpora. The negative end of the spectrum denotes the distinctiveness of the word in counter1, while the positive end of the spectrum does the same for counter2.