Il domenicale del NYT dedica un lungo articolo - molto critico e dai toni ironici - a Franco Moretti, professore di Comparative Literature a Stanford, ideatore della teoria del Distant Reading e fondatore del Stanford Literary Lab. A scriverlo è Kathryn Schulz, che ha la fama di essere the world's leading wrongologist (v. usalibri, 28/3/11). Ecco qualche esempio delle grandi scoperte di Moretti secondo Schulz, "It turns out, though, that people and computers identify genres via very different features. People recognize, say, Gothic literature based on castles, revenants, brooding atmospheres, and the greater frequency of words like 'tremble' and 'ruin.' Computers recognize Gothic literature based on the greater frequency of words like . . . 'the.' Now, that's interesting. It suggests that genres 'possess distinctive features at every possible scale of analysis.' More important for the Lit Lab, it suggests that there are formal aspects of literature that people, unaided, cannot detect", oppure, "Some insights do emerge from this paper's 57 diagrams, as when the nascent divide between court and state in Renaissance Europe becomes visible in the network. Reading the paper, though, I mostly vacillated between two reactions: 'Huh? and 'Duh!' - sometimes in response to a single sentence. For example, Moretti, quoting a colleague, defines 'protagonist' as 'the character that minimized the sum of the distances to all other vertices.' Huh? O.K., he means the protagonist is the character with the smallest average degree of separation from the others, 'the center of the network.' So guess who's the protagonist of Hamlet? Right: Hamlet. Duh". nytbr.