Text Analysis

Qualitative and Quantitative Methods

Published in: Handbook of Research Methods in Cultural Anthropology Qualitative Research / Edited by H. Russell Bernard (Walnut Creek, CA: AltaMira Press, 1998), p. 595-646

Posted on RAND.org on January 01, 1998

by H. Russell Bernard, Gery W. Ryan

Read More

Access further information on this document at www.altamirapress.com

This article was published outside of RAND. The full text of the article can be found at the link above.

The systematic analysis of text--from political speeches to folktales--is growing in interest across the social sciences. In this chapter, the authors discuss two broad types of text analysis: the linguistic tradition, which treats text as an object of analysis itself, and the sociological tradition, which treats text as a window into human experience. For the linguistic tradition, the authors review how anthropologists have collected and produced texts, analyzed indigenous literatures, discovered patterns and structures in performance styles, and compared the production of narratives within and across cultures. For the sociological tradition, they review the methods of schema analysis, grounded theory, classical content analysis, semantic network analysis, cognitive mapping, and Boolean analysis. The authors close their review with a list of questions that might be useful in guiding future research on methods of text analysis.

This report is part of the RAND Corporation External publication series. Many RAND studies are published in peer-reviewed scholarly journals, as chapters in commercial books, or as documents published by other organizations.

The RAND Corporation is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.