3.590 more on Zipf's law (27)

Willard McCarty (MCCARTY@vm.epas.utoronto.ca)
Sun, 15 Oct 89 18:22:41 EDT

Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 3, No. 590. Sunday, 15 Oct 1989.

Date: Sat, 14 Oct 89 12:50 BST
From: Oxford Text Archive <ARCHIVE@VAX.OXFORD.AC.UK>
Subject: Zipf's Law

Zipf's law is discussed at length in his book 'Selected studies of the
principle of relative frequency in language' (1932). I don't know if this
was its first formulation, though I doubt it. An extended discussion is
given in 'The psychobiology of language' (1966). Most writers on statistics
in literary studies make fairly disparaging references to Zipf's "so-called
law" and go to great lengths to disprove it. Zipf was also the author
of a book which has one of my favourite titles of all time, viz:

Human Behavior and the Principle of Least Effort (1949)

Informatively, (if late),

Lou Burnard