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Orlando, Women’s Writing in the British Isles

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19 March, 2021

A pioneering resource for women’s writing, a self-described textbase, the Orlando Project is edited by Patricia Clements, Isobel Grundy, Sharon Balazs, and Jeffrey Antoniuk of the University of Alberta, and Susan Brown of the University of Guelph. It was published by individual or institutional subscription on the web by Cambridge University Press in June 2006, although research and development began in 1998, and is available at some institutional libraries.

Orlando constitutes a vast archive of knowledge, 8 million words of text, about women writers, principally British and writing in a variety of genres going as far back in history as the earliest writing by women in Britain (its full title specifies ‘From the Beginnings to the Present’). Beyond the literary genres of poetry, fiction, and drama Orlando includes women known as writers of science, household advice, or popular genres, travel writing, and cultural critique. The historical breadth and depth, particularly, has increased its influence on Renaissance and Enlightenment literary studies from a feminist perspective.

This collection is a result of using the term architecture in two separate searches – the first in the Chronologies, by tag, and the second in the Tag Search, by core tags – the use of the textbase is an art in itself, and tutorials are available for a full understanding of how to make and use searches. These results come out of a relatively simple approach. Nevertheless, a couple of cross-searches revealed little more explicitly assigned to the term architecture, showing that the definition of architecture as written about by women is wider than the conventional, even when women are doing the work of recording.

Orlando, Women’s Writing in the British Isles

A pioneering resource for women’s writing, a self-described textbase, the Orlando Project is edited by Patricia Clements, Isobel Grundy, Sharon Balazs, and Jeffrey Antoniuk of the University of Alberta, and Susan B...