The Frame Generator was initially used to investigate popular perspectives on the concept of ‘Europe’ arising from the KB collection of Dutch historical newspapers. To this end, a dataset was prepared of articles that mentioned the word ‘Europe’ at least once. A subset of articles was then selected on the basis of (Dutch-language) synonyms for the words ‘unity’ and ‘unification’ (such as ‘integration’, ‘agreement’, ‘settlement’, ‘consensus’, ‘treaty’, ‘harmony’, etc). This subset was assumed to contain news articles that discuss Europe as a unified political / cultural / economic entity, or as an entity involved in a process of unification. The other subset was based on synonyms for competitions (such as ‘match’, ‘prize’, ‘winner’, ‘cup’, etc); this subset was assumed to contain articles on sports and other competitions. The data from each of these two subsets were grouped into 10-year periods.
The datasets prepared were analyzed with the Frame Generator, using the command line interface. The results were interpreted by visualizing the co-occurrence networks with Gephi. For our use case we found that newspaper reporting on ‘European unity’, while showing a remarkable degree of continuity, became less rich rhetorically, less international, and more focused on institutional technocracy than on intra-continental relations.
Network graph in Gephi showing a frame of contextualised keywords related to spatial entities (green), concepts related to community formation (blue) and abstract terms (purple), based on newspaper articles from De Telegraaf (1925-1929; n = 767).