Most common methods for automatic text analysis in communication science ignore syntactic information, focusing on the occurrence and co-occurrence of individual words, and sometimes n-grams. This is remarkably effective for some purposes, but poses a limitation for fine-grained analyses into semantic relations such as who says what to whom and according to what source. One tested, effective method for moving beyond this bag-of-words assumption is to use a rule-based approach for labeling and extracting syntactic patterns in dependency trees. Although this method can be used for a variety of purposes, its application is hindered by the lack of dedicated and accessible tools. In this paper we introduce the rsyntax R package, which is designed to make working with dependency trees easier and more intuitive for R users, and provides a framework for combining multiple rules for reliably extracting useful semantic relations
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