Welcome to the Love Carousel Project!

In July of 2020 I noticed a significant gender imbalance in the carousels google returned with my poetry search queries--not even 10% of the work included was authored by women. I began to think about how technology could be used to curate poetry, ideally in more interesting and equitable ways. This is the home for my ongoing experiments.

The Love Carousels

What do computers know about love?

{{ Give me a new love carousel }}
Love poems red and white image

About the Love Carousel Project

A place to find love poems

Inspired by the lack of diversity that characterizes the results at the top of Google's poetry search results, this project aims to showcase and celebrate a variety of love poems and poets. To this end, I've experimented with different technologies to curate and create love poem carousels that help people discover new poems, as well as old favorites. The poems themselves are published on either the Academy of American Poet's or the Poetry Foundation website, and clicking any poem in a carousel will bring you directly to the relevant site.

This is an ongoing project and I will be creating and posting new carousels, so please check back for updates or follow @LoveCarousel on Twitter, where I will announce new additions.

Share a Love Poem

Using state-of-the-art technology to curate love poems

Drawing of Cupid

Illustrations of Love

I asked my computer to match 1000 love poems to images from the Metropolitan Museum of Art. Here's what happened.
Image of Baptismal Certificate, 1807

The Sentiment Carousels

I asked Google's Natural Language Processing system to tell me the sentiment of each love poem--from most positive to most negative--and then made a love poem carousel to display the top results!
Quilt, Star of Bethlehem pattern variation by Ellen Morton Littlejohn

In the Mood for a Beauty & Fitness Love Poem?

Interested in Science? Shopping? Music? I made a love poem carousel for each using Google's Natural Language Processing system to automatically categorize the love poems.
Venus Catching Love or Venus Flogging Love by  Anne Claude Philippe de Tubières

The Shifting Sentiment of Language

Today 'nice' is usually a compliment, but it once meant 'foolish.' 'Bully' once meant darling; 'amuse' to deceive. How many words in the love poems have shifted sentiment since they were penned? I take a look.
The Victory of Eros by Angelica Kauffmann

The Frequency of Love

When I searched my set of 1000 love poems for poems without the word 'love', I wasn't expecting to find over 400 of them. Browse the love-free carousel!
Image Generated by my Computer

My Computer Illustrates Love Poems

Poems (by humans) with Visuals (by machine)
Near Last Camp on Ross Fork, Snake River, Lander Wagon Road, Oregon by Henry Hitchings

My Computer Sings a Love Song

The love poems in this carousel are all found in the public domain--I put together the collection because I wanted to set the love poems to music (computer-generated music, that is) and didn't want to voilate copyright. Hear what my computer came up with!
Image Generated by my Computer

My Computer Sketches Poets

Portraits of poets, drawn by an AI

Coming soon...

More carousels!

One Thousand Love Poems

Minnehaha by Edmonia Lewis

About the Love Poems

In August of 2020, I collected 710 poems identified as love poems by the Academy of American Poets. Based on the pronouns in the author bios, I determined that 407 poems were written by male poets and 297 by female poets (4 of the bios used the gender-neutral 'they' and several, e.g. '1 Corinthians 13:4', had no author).

I wanted a collection of 1000 love poems, so I added more poems tagged as love by the Poetry Foundation. Note that I found over two thousand love poems on the Poetry Foundation site and decided to add only ones that were likely written by women (I ran the first names through a gender predicting program and selected one poem by each poet identified as female, for a total of 365 new poems). Ultimately, I put together a set of 1075 poems, of which I estimate a little over 60 percent are written by women.

The complete list is here.

More of My Work on Gender Bias

Red and white drawing of love

Searching for Love Poems

In mid July of 2020, I opened my browser and searched for ‘love poems.’ Of over thirty poems in the carousel displayed at the top of the search results, only two were authored by women: “Mad Girl’s Love Song” by Sylvia Plath and “Oriri” by Marie Stopes.

red and blue heads silhouetted over library

Into The Gap: What Machine Learning Reveals About Gender And Writing

As I searched for banned texts on Project Gutenberg, which hosts over 58,000 texts that can be downloaded free of charge, I began to wonder how many of the books—banned or not—were by women.

Cellphone browser of wikipeedia in front of library

The Sum of What? On Gender, Visibility, and Wikipedia

I tallied how often women were cited in Wikipedia’s top math and literature pages. The results weren’t pretty.

Get In Touch

Drop a line! I'd love to hear from you.