Literature by Numbers


Literature and algorithms

Drama Critiques explores 10 years of English contemporary theatre by using Data Science. By focusing on two literary communities (journalists on the one hand and bloggers on the other hand) we examine the poetical and political discourse they build thanks to their reviews. Based on a corpus of more than 40 000 theatre reviews published between 2010 and 2020 on the London stage, Drama Critiques explores the similaries and the differences between these two communities thanks to algorithms.


Since 2010 in England, a wave of blogs written by authors coming from various horizons has arisen on the Internet. Students, theatre professionals but also mere amateurs began publishing their own theatre reviews. These new independent voices in the digital space progressively redefined the shape of classic journalistic criticism. Although discreet, they offer a new vision of the history of Londonian theatres.



With more than 40 000 English theatre reviews, our corpus is composed of the 23 most influent newspapers (The Guardian, The Times, The Independent, etc.) and the 28 most popular blogs of the Internet (West End Wilma, Everything Theatre, There Ought To Be Clowns, etc.). It is thanks to this database that we can analyse both of these communities thanks to digital tools.

discover the corpus
Theatre reviews
years of theatre (2010-2020)
different plays
locations in london

Literary / computational analysis

Machine Learning
and NLP

How can we define the literary style of these reviewers? Can we observe any differences?


Which plays do they favour? Are there any similarities in their aesthetic preferences?


Which places do they visit the most? How can we interpret their geographical repartition?

explore 40 000 theatre reviews

A search engine has been created to help you discover the corpus. Learn more about plays you do not know about, look for plays by selecting a theme, or simply read all the reviews written on Hamlet!


search engine

can a machine read?

Can a computer read? Do algorithms replace human beings? By the way, what is an algorithm? Behind the Machine is an application which was created to answer these questions.

discover the app

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