Although Keith Laumer is not well known today, his works were popular reading in North America during the 1900s.

Suppose that a computer programme was used to count the number of instances of every word in the Retief novels.

For example, we might enumerate the number of instances of the word "ran" and the number of instances of the word "said".

When such analysis is conducted, what are the 10,000 most commonly used English words in American pulp fiction from the 1900s with a particular focus on the works of Keith Laumer?

List of Works to be Analyzed

A description of the works we wish to analyze are shown below.

  • Retief: Envoy to New Worlds (1987)
  • Galactic Diplomat (1965)
  • Retief's War (1966)
  • Retief and the Warlords (1968)
  • Retief: ambassador to space; seven incidents of the Corps diplomatique terrestrienne (1969)
  • Retief of the CDT (1971)
  • Retief's Ransom (1971)
  • Retief: Emissary to the Stars (1975)
  • Retief at Large (1978)
  • Retief Unbound (1979) (including Retief's Ransom and five of the six stories from Envoy to New Worlds) (see Retief: Envoy to New Worlds (1987))
  • Retief: Diplomat at Arms (1982) (revised version of Galactic Diplomat)
  • Retief to the Rescue (1983)
  • The Return of Retief (1984)
  • Retief in the Ruins (1986)
  • Retief and the Pangalactic Pageant of Pulchritude (1986) (including Retief's Ransom and the original title story)
  • Retief: Envoy to New Worlds (1987) (Envoy to New Worlds plus one story) (see also Retief Unbound)
  • Reward for Retief (1989)
  • Retief and the Rascals (1993)
  • 3
    Which part of this are you having trouble with? Also, could you provide some motivation for the question? May 15 at 15:56
  • Hello and welcome to Literature Stack Exchange. American Pulp Fiction from the 1900s is an extremely broad category. Asking for the 10,000 most frequently used words from that genre seems rather scattershot, given that there could be genuine debates over which works are included. Also, without tokenization (i.e., classifying ran, run, and running as the same word) and well-scoped exclusions (leaving out a, the, and), the list is likely less than illuminating (contd.)
    – verbose
    May 15 at 16:08
  • 1
    (contd.) Without a narrower sense of what works you're specifically interested in (rather than just undefined "pulp fiction") and what the purpose is for generating such a list (which might explain whether tokenization and exclusions are needed), this question seems rather unclear. Please edit to provide some direction for answerers. Thanks!
    – verbose
    May 15 at 16:12


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