Since I did not have any txt ready censorship data for today’s workshop exercise, I quickly grabbed four Columbian Exposition of 1893 “visitor response” books from Project Gutenberg to use with Voyant in testing text analysis, and this is the (wordstopped) cloud that emerged:


Clearly visitors to the fair had a good time. They talked far less about art, artists, artistic work, decor, decorative art and crafts. But it was interesting to learn who did talk about those things a little bit, and it was the picturesque guide–a collection of postcards and text showing the buildings and exhibits of the fair. When I went back to the full text, this made sense, as the picturesque guide was explicitly describing visual works. So I learned something that kinda sorta reconfirmed what I already knew about the texts. But I also learned that the so-called “ordinary” visitor to the fair wasn’t even remotely thinking in terms of conventional art terms for describing their experiences, maybe weren’t even thinking in terms of describing them visually. So I would have to go back to a close-reading of those particular texts to learn more about how art/decorative art was or was not revealed in these texts.