Content Elicitation: Towards a New Paradigm for the Analysis and Interpretation of Texts

Andrea Bellandi, Alessia Bellusci, Enrico Carniani, and Emiliano Giovannetti


Semantic annotation, knowledge representation, text ontology, literary computing, content elicitation


In this paper we show how semantic technologies can be exploited, with the help of user friendly interfaces, to identify and structure the knowledge embedded in literary texts. The proposed approach, that we have called Content Elicitation, supports the experts in defining hierarchical and associative relationships between semantically annotated chunks of text denoting relevant entities, allowing visual structuring of knowledge, which can be edited by different experts in a collaborative way. This knowledge, formally coded as an ontology, can then be used by scholars and students as a guide for the analysis of the text and for the discovery of potential novel interpretations. We are testing and evaluating this approach on the Babylonian Talmud, due to its historical, linguistic, semantic and structural richness.

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