Event-Location Tracking in Narratives: A Case Study on Holocaust Testimonies

Eitan Wagner, Renana Keydar, Omri Abend

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionpeer-review

Abstract

This work focuses on the spatial dimension of narrative understanding and presents the task of event-location tracking in narrative texts, namely the extraction of the sequence of locations where the narrative is set. We present several architectures for the task that seek to model the global structure of the sequence, with varying levels of context awareness. We compare these methods to a number of strong baselines and ablated variants. We also develop methods for the generation of location embeddings and show that learning to predict a sequence of continuous embeddings is advantageous in terms of performance over predicting a string of locations. We focus on the test case of Holocaust survivor testimonies, motivated by the moral and historical importance of studying this dataset using computational means. The dataset further provides a unique case of a large set of narratives with a relatively restricted set of location trajectories. Our results show that models that are aware of the global context of the narrative can generate more accurate location chains. We corroborate the effectiveness of our methods by showing similar trends in an additional domain.

Original languageAmerican English
Title of host publicationEMNLP 2023 - 2023 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing, Proceedings
EditorsHouda Bouamor, Juan Pino, Kalika Bali
PublisherAssociation for Computational Linguistics (ACL)
Pages8789-8805
Number of pages17
ISBN (Electronic)9798891760608
StatePublished - 2023
Event2023 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing, EMNLP 2023 - Hybrid, Singapore, Singapore
Duration: 6 Dec 202310 Dec 2023

Publication series

NameEMNLP 2023 - 2023 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing, Proceedings

Conference

Conference2023 Conference on Empirical Methods in Natural Language Processing, EMNLP 2023
Country/TerritorySingapore
CityHybrid, Singapore
Period6/12/2310/12/23

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Association for Computational Linguistics.

Fingerprint

Dive into the research topics of 'Event-Location Tracking in Narratives: A Case Study on Holocaust Testimonies'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this