Using TACT with Electronic Texts

  • Authors: Ian Lancashire, in collaboration with John Bradley, Willard McCarty, Michael Stairs, T. R. Wooldridge
  • Pages: xiv & 361 pp.
  • Published: 1996
  • ISBN: 9780873525695 (Paperback)

The manual Using TACT with Electronic Texts is available free of charge as a PDF file (28 MB). Click here to download it.

Using TACT with Electronic Texts is the manual for Text-Analysis Computing Tools (TACT), a suite of powerful, easy-to-use software programs for analyzing electronic texts. Available as shareware since 1989, TACT has proved extraordinarily popular with graduate students and professional scholars in the humanities, who have used the data it provides to enrich their literary interpretations.

Using TACT with Electronic Texts provides basic instructions for beginners and describes many techniques that experienced users may not know TACT makes possible. Eleven chapters lead readers step-by-step through not only the operations of the TACT programs but also the fundamentals of computer text analysis. The topics covered include obtaining literary texts in electronic form, ensuring the integrity of electronic texts, tagging texts effectively for various kinds of analysis, and using TACT in teaching and research. A reference section, arranged alphabetically by topic, gives readers quick access to detailed explanations of the features and components of the TACT programs. A series of appendixes offers technical information for advanced users. The manual concludes with a glossary of specialized terms, a bibliography of works on the study of literature by computer, and an exhaustive index.

TACT was developed by the Centre for Computing in the Humanities, at the University of Toronto, and is available for downloading at the center’s Web site (