Visualization of fictional correspondence networks

In this visualization of The History of Emily Montague (1769), the novel’s characters are represented according to the frequency with which they write to one another. Female characters are represented by orange nodes, while blue nodes represent male characters. The size of each character’s node indicates the total number of letters he or she writes over the course of the novel. The width of the edges between nodes indicates the frequency with which any two characters write to one another.

To interact with the visualization, click and drag a node to reposition the network or to see more clearly which other people are part of that character’s correspondence network. The entire graph can be moved by clicking and dragging on an edge connecting two nodes. Zoom in (or out) on a particular region of the network by hovering over it with the mouse cursor and using the mouse scroll wheel.

About the visualization

This visualization is a force-directed graph created using the free, open-source Protovis visualization framework developed at Stanford University. For prototyping purposes, it is generated at present from a static data file derived from the WWP's XML files for the novel in question. Should we choose at a later date to make visualizations like these part of standard the Women Writers Online interface, however, it would be rewritten to take advantage of dynamic XML-based querying into our full textbase, enabling a wider range of interactive possibilities.