The Fashionable Functions Reloaded: An Updated Google Ngram View of Trends in Functional Differentiation (1800-2000)
In: Mesquita, A. (Ed.) Research Paradigms and Contemporary Perspectives on Human-Technology Interaction. Hershey: IGI-Global, pp. 236-265
31 Pages Posted: 26 Jun 2016 Last revised: 9 Feb 2017
Date Written: January 21, 2017
Using the updated Google Book corpus dataset generated in July 2012, we analyze the largest available corpus of digitalized books to review social macro trends such as the secularization, politicization, economization, and mediatization of society. These familiar trend statements are tested through a comparative analysis of word frequency time-series plots for the English, French, and German language area produced by means of the enhanced Google Ngram Viewer, the online graphing tool that charts annual word counts as found in the Google Book corpus. The results a) confirm that the importance of the political system, religion, economy, and mass media features significant change in time and considerable regional differences and b) suggest that visions of economized or capitalist societies are intellectual artifacts rather than appropriate descriptions of society.
Keywords: Functional Differentiation, Google Ngram, Culturomics, Capitalism, Economization, Secularization, Politicization, Mediatization
JEL Classification: A14
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