The compound term Docu-Narrative emphasizes the multilayered nature of data-driven scholarship, particularly its two major components:
Each block of docu-narratives below is based on a concrete case study rooted in modern China. Most documents use R Markdown language. Data and R projects can be accessed on GitLab.
The Rotary Club in the Chinese Press: A Practical Guide to the “enpchina” R package. This guide shows how historians can take advantage of the “enpchina” R package to explore the entire collection of the Chinese newspaper Shenbao 申報 taking the Rotary Club of Shanghai上海扶輪社 (Shanghai fulunshe) as a case study (Rmd version).
The Rotary Club in the English-language press: A Practical Guide to the “enpchina” R package. This guide shows how historians can take advantage of the “enpchina” R package to explore the entire ProQuest Chinese Newspapers Collection taking the Rotary Club of Shanghai as a case study (Rmd version).
This series of docu-narratives aims to demonstrate how historians of modern China can take advantage of the “enpchina” R package to explore massive press corpora. Based on a concrete case study – the Rotary Club of Shanghai 上海扶輪社 (Shanghai fulunshe) - we focus on the leading Chinese newspaper Shenbao 申報 (1872-1949) and the ProQuest Chinese Newspapers Collection that contains a dozen of English-language periodicals published in Shanghai, Beijing and Guangzhou between 1850 and the early 1950s.
This tutorial series applies a place-based methodology to study Sino-American alumni networks in modern China, based on a directory of the American University Club of Shanghai published in 1936. It is divided into four parts:
The following docu-narratives revisit the old debate on the Chinese public sphere through the joint empirical study of two key institutions – a transnational organization (the Rotary Club) and the Shanghai press, which has been recognized as the first mass medium for disseminating information in modern China and which constituted the very venue through which non-state organizations like the Rotary Club shaped their social and discursive practices. Methodologically, this research relies on structural topic modeling to map out the four modus operandi of the transnational public sphere from a bilingual and dynamic perspective during the troubled decades between the end of WWI and the Communist revolution (1919-1949). It further employs named entity recognition (NER), network analysis, and geographical information system (GIS) to analyze the network of actors involved in the transnational public sphere and map its geographical contours in both presses. Finally, this research relies on text analysis, including words frequency and semantic networks, to compare the terminologies and values associated with the public in the Chinese and English presses. his documentation was produced to accompany the journal article titled "Shaping the Transnational Public Sphere in Republican China: Discourses and Practices of the Rotary Club in the Shanghai Press (1919-1949)" published in the Journal of Digital History. The complete code and data are available on GitHub.