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Harvesting footnotes in a rural field: Citation patterns in Swedish literary studies
Institutionen för ABM, Uppsala Universitet.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-1504-8395
2012 (English)In: Journal of Documentation, ISSN 0022-0418, E-ISSN 1758-7379, Vol. 68, no 4, p. 536-558Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Purpose – The aim of this article is to study a locally-oriented and book-based research field usingtwo Swedish language sources. Knowledge about citation patterns outside journal-based, Englishlanguage databases is scarce; thus a substantial part of research in the humanities and the socialsciences is neglected in bibliometric studies.Design/methodology/approach – Citation characteristics (publication type, language, gender andage) in the journal Tidskrift fo¨ r Litteraturvetenskap (2000-2009) and in grant applications (2006-2009)are studied. The datasets are analyzed further, adopting an author-co-citation approach for depictingand comparing the “intellectual base” of the field.Findings – It is shown that monographs and anthologies are the main publication channel inSwedish literary research. English, followed by Swedish, is the major language, and the gender ofauthors seems to influence citation practices. Furthermore, a common intellectual base of literarystudies that is independent of publication type and language could be identified.Practical implications – Bibliometric analysis of fields within the humanities needs to go beyondestablished databases and materials. The extensive use of recent English language monographs inSwedish literary studies informs the acquisition policy of university libraries serving literaturescholars.Originality/value – Citation analysis of non-English sources offers further knowledge aboutscholarly fields with a local and “rural” profile. The approach of using references in grant applicationsprovides a novel and promising venue for bibliometric research.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2012. Vol. 68, no 4, p. 536-558
Keywords [en]
Citation analysis, Bibliometrics, Grant applications, Humanities, Literary studies, Scholarly communication, Sweden, Communication, Data analysis, Periodicals
National Category
Information Studies
Research subject
Library and Information Science
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-281DOI: 10.1108/00220411211239101OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hb-281DiVA, id: diva2:826586
Available from: 2015-06-25 Created: 2015-06-25 Last updated: 2018-03-21Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Following the Footnotes: A Bibliometric Analysis of Citation Patterns in Literary Studies
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Following the Footnotes: A Bibliometric Analysis of Citation Patterns in Literary Studies
2012 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Hammarfelt, B. 2012. Following the Footnotes: A Bibliometric Analysis of Citation Patterns in Literary Studies. Department of ALM. Skrifter utgivna av Institutionen för ABM vid Uppsala universitet 5. 193 pp. Uppsala. ISBN 978-91-506-2279-9.

This thesis provides an in-depth study of the possibilities of applying bibliometric methods to the research field of literary studies. The four articles that constitute the backbone of this thesis focus on different aspects of references and citations in literary studies: from the use of references in the text to citation patterns among 34 literature journals. The analysis covers both an Anglo-Saxon context as well as research in Swedish literary studies, and the materials used include Web of Science data, references in the Swedish literature journal TFL (Tidskrift för Litteraturvetenskap) and applications to the Swedish Research Council (Vetenskapsrådet). A study is also made of the influence of one single publication—Walter Benjamin’s Illuminations—and its impact in literary studies and in wider academia. The results from the four articles are elaborated upon using a theoretical framework that focuses on differences in the social and intellectual organization of research fields. According to these theories literary studies can be described as a fragmented, heterogenic, interdisciplinary and ‘rural’ field with a diverse audience. The fragmented and rural organization of the field is reflected in low citation frequencies as well as in the difficulties in discerning research specialities in co-citation mappings, while the analysis of the intellectual base (highly cited authors) is an example of the heterogenic and interdisciplinary character of the field, as it includes authors from many fields across the humanities and the social sciences. The thesis emphasizes that bibliometric studies of research fields in the humanities need to incorporate non-English and non-journal publications in order to produce valid and fair results. Moreover, bibliometric methods must be modified in accordance with the organization of research in a particular field, and differences in referencing practices and citation patterns ought to be considered. Consequently, it is advised that bibliometric measures for evaluating research in these fields should, if used at all, be applied with great caution.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2012
Keywords
Bibliometrics, citation analysis, scholarly communication, research practices, literary studies, the humanities, visualization
National Category
Information Studies
Research subject
Library and Information Science
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:hb:diva-280 (URN)978-91-506-2279-9 (ISBN)
Note

© Björn Hammarfelt 2012

Available from: 2015-06-25 Created: 2015-06-25 Last updated: 2015-07-14Bibliographically approved

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