The Writing Revolution: Watching, Questioning, Enjoying / Edition 1

The Writing Revolution: Watching, Questioning, Enjoying / Edition 1

by Amalia E. Gnanadesikan
     
 

In a world of rapid technological advancement, it is easy to forget that writing is the original Information Technology, created to transcend the limitations of human memory and to defy time and space. The Writing Revolution describes how this communication tool has conquered the world, making possible everything from complex bureaucracy, literature,

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Overview

In a world of rapid technological advancement, it is easy to forget that writing is the original Information Technology, created to transcend the limitations of human memory and to defy time and space. The Writing Revolution describes how this communication tool has conquered the world, making possible everything from complex bureaucracy, literature, and science, to instruction manuals and love letters.

The author deftly describes each of the world’s major written traditions, tracing its origins, the way it captures the language(s) for which it is used, its applications and adaptations, and its cultural impact. From the first cuneiform clay tablet to the World Wide Web – by way of Egyptian hieroglyphs, Japanese syllabaries, and the printing press, among others – this book offers a fascinating insight into the history of one of the world’s greatest inventions.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781405154079
Publisher:
Wiley
Publication date:
12/03/2008
Series:
Language Library Series
Edition description:
New Edition
Pages:
322
Sales rank:
932,819
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.80(d)

Table of Contents

List of Illustrations vii

Preface xi

1 The First IT Revolution 1

2 Cuneiform: Forgotten Legacy of a Forgotten People 13

3 Egyptian Hieroglyphs and the Quest for Eternity 33

4 Chinese: A Love of Paperwork 56

5 Maya Glyphs: Calendars of Kings 79

6 Linear B: The Clerks of Agamemnon 95

7 Japanese: Three Scripts are Better than One 113

8 Cherokee: Sequoyah Reverse-Engineers 133

9 The Semitic Alphabet: Egypt to Manchuria in 3,400 Years 143

10 The Empire of Sanskrit 169

11 King Sejong’s One-Man Renaissance 191

12 Greek Serendipity 208

13 The Age of Latin 229

14 The Alphabet Meets the Machine 249

Appendix: Figures A.1–A.7 273

Further Reading 281

Index 297

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