Pennebaker, J. W., Mehl, M. R., & Niederhoffer, K. G. (2003). Psychological aspects of natural language use: Our words, our selves. Annual Review of Psychology, 54, 547-577.
While Jamie Pennebaker is best known in content analysis circles for his Linguistic Inquiry and Word Count (LIWC) dictionary-based computer-aided text analytic software, this article is a must-read for content analysts of all types. While some content analysis is interested in the manifest effects of language, much content analytic work asserts a connection between the language we use and some deeper construct of interest. Whether that is personality, values, strategy, emotion, or otherwise, understanding the psychological underpinnings of language use is pretty important. This article provides a valuable exposition on just that. It is focused on psychology research and generally follows Jamie’s work using LIWC, but I think there are valuable insights for all content analysts here as well.