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Writing is about communication. In our multimedia age, it co-exists with a developed oral culture of telecommunications, film and recorded sound. Through our television screens and popular press, it interrelates with sound and image in complex ways. Writing is nonetheless as important as ever as the principal conveyor of information, unlocking the secrets of human knowledge and identity.
In The British Library Guide to Writing and Scripts: History and Techniques, Michelle P. Brown surveys the many forms in which writing has evolved in East and West, the tools and materials used, and how they have influenced the development of scripts. She examines particularly the processes involved in the production of the medieval book in the West, and assesses the impact of later technological developments in communication on the current state of writing and its future.
With over 70 colour and black-and-white illustrations, The British Library Guide to Writing and Scripts: History and Techniques is one of a series of titles providing accessible and lively introductions to the practical aspects of the history of books and how they are made.
|Systems of information transmission and the relationship between thought, sound, word and image||7|
|Mnemonic and other simple forms of graphic message transmission||11|
|Pictography (picture writing) and literal graphic representation||12|
|Logography, the rebus and the development of ideography (thought writing)||15|
|Mixed systems (cuneiform and hieroglyphic)||23|
|Phonography (sound writing): the phonetic systems (syllabic, consonantal and alphabetical)||28|
|Ancient Mediterranean syllabic scripts||29|
|Consonantal and alphabetical scripts||30|
|The western alphabet||35|
|The creation of scripts to suit languages||42|
|2||Form and function||50|
|The technology of writing and the materials used||51|
|3||Writing in the West||66|
|Making a medieval illuminated manuscript: techniques and stages of production||66|
|The people behind the words||70|
|The evolution of western scripts||78|
|4||Where is writing going?||88|