WG3 “Literary Theory and History” is the working group set with the task of exploring theoretical concerns that stem from the application of Distant Reading methods to literary history. In particular, it will focus on the issues that arise from data-driven research into literary history across different literary traditions in Europe. Its aim is to question and re-assess the notions of writing literary history with the help of methodologies and tools of distant reading. Because its members come from different theoretical backgrounds, including scholars focused on digital literary studies as well as those based in more mainstream/traditional approaches, it seeks to foster a lively, balanced and fruitful debate about the advantages as well as limitations of Distant Reading methodologies and approaches to the study of European literary history. The objectives of this working group are twofold. While its primary aim is to provide a theoretical underpinning to the project’s activities, its parallel objective is to use Distant Reading research for a re-evaluation and redefinition of key concepts for literary history, such as genre, style or authorship. While paying particular attention to differences and similarities across different literary traditions, WG3 “Literary Theory and History” ultimately aims to examine the results obtained by Distant Reading and explore their implications for periodisation and canonisation in European literary history.