Monthly Archives: October 2012

The Invention of Photography

By Lynnette Earle & Jerry Mah (access to Word Document) Introduction  The invention of photography and its legacy has changed the world. Photography has modified the phenomenology of reading and writing by enhancing the text only experience. A brief history of … Continue reading

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The Invention of the Telegraph

Introduction Writing is a technology. Although Plato feared that the emerging technology of writing would one day undermine oral literacy, he was correct in that writing alters the meaning of literacy, and it also greatly enhances and expands our ability … Continue reading

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On Paper and Pen

Introduction Today, both paper and pens are a ubiquitous and affordable resource. Pens may carry a cultural value when given as special gifts, yet others are discarded at the first sign of malfunction. Historians have tended to subsume the history … Continue reading

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Shaped by technology

The invention and popularization of the personal computer almost 30 years ago opened the door to the auto-edition era and therefore, to the informal knowledge and use of typography. But typography as a concept has existed since Gutenberg’s invention of … Continue reading

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Modern Science: Indebted to the Printing Press

The rise of modern empirical science took place in Europe beginning in the late sixteenth century (Huff, 2003, p. 326).  Copernicus’ view of a heliocentric universe, traditionally viewed as the main precursor to modern science, created a disruption of scholarly … Continue reading

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First Nations from Orality to Writing

First Nations from Orality to Writing Introduction Click here for a recording of “Storyteller” by Joan Crate (2008, p. 388). Until contacted by European explorers and settlers, Canadian First Nations’ communities were what Ong (1982) would call primarily oral. Their … Continue reading

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A Moderate View

In Orality and Literacy, Ong (2002) presents an elaborate account of a well reasoned, and highly detailed, but polarizing description of the social and psychological consequences associated with technological determinism as it applies to literacy and literate culture.  This account … Continue reading

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Literate Bias in a Literate Society

In “Biases of the Ear and Eye”, Chandler outlines some possible problems involved in “Great Divide” theories which create dichotomies based on orality and literacy. In particular he points to the exaggeration of differences found in oral and literate cultures … Continue reading

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The Great Leaders’ Technophobia

Upon my visit to the Grand People’s Library in Pyongyang, I saw a room with people accessing information for free, in a public place. I was excited. I wanted to use the North Korean Intranet. My handler set out to help … Continue reading

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Critiquing Ong and the Relationship of Literacy to Culture

Walter J. Ong is a renowned scholar, university Professor of English and Humanities in Psychiatry and the author of several highly influential studies on the transformation of human consciousness (Ong, 1982). He is an expert in the field of orality … Continue reading

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