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Mathematical Analysis of Mental Health in Literature
Bar graph of number of derogatory mental health terms used in a novel in chronological publishing order.
Alexandra Hill Bar Graph.png
Class of 2023
English - French

Alexandra Hill (she/her/hers), born and raised in Los Angeles, California, is a member of the Class of 2023 at St. Lawrence University with a triple major in English, French, and mathematics, as well as a minor in statistics. Hill’s student research utilizes math to analyze the portrayal of mental health in literature. Beyond her scholarly interests, she works as editor-in-chief of The Laurentian Magazine and managing editor of The Hill News. She is president of the co-ed service fraternity APO, program manager for St.



Summer 2021

To what extent has the portrayal of mental health in English literature evolved over the past century? I utilized R to perform data science analyzation techniques on fiction novels about mental illness that range over the past century. The current final data includes the full analysis and visualizations from eight novels, but thanks to the successful completion of the R code template, many more books can be added as applicable. The final R document allows the uploading, cleaning, and formatting of the texts of the books. From there, I pursued myriad analysis techniques and produced data visualizations, including various forms of sentiment analysis and looking at the usage of mental health words.