Vous voulez voir cette page en français ? Cliquez ici.

Have one to sell? Sell yours here
Tell the Publisher!
I'd like to read this book on Kindle

Don't have a Kindle? Get your Kindle here, or download a FREE Kindle Reading App.

ABC: Alphabetization of the Popular Mind [Paperback]

Barry Sanders , Ivan Illich


Available from these sellers.


‹  Return to Product Overview

Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Maverick social critic Illich (Medical Nemesis) and medievalist Sanders have teamed to write a dense, frustrating essay on the way written language affects our perception of ourselves and the world. They claim that the modern self is an "alphabetic construct": each of us weaves a cocoon of stories about ourselves, and we can only do so because of narrative literary traditions of the past several centuries. Ranging over the history of alphabets, intriguing word lore, a comparison of the Iliad with Serbian epics, the origins of autobiography and Huckleberry Finn, the authors reach sweeping, ill-defined conclusions. Lying and moral feigning, they argue, are possible because memory is like a mental text. Human culture, in their ethnocentric view, was made possible by alphabetic writing. They fail to consider societies based on ideographic or hieroglyphic scripts. The final chapter, on Orwellian newspeak, pinpoints the dangers of applying computer terminology to human interaction.
Copyright 1987 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Library Journal

The authors argue that the relation that has bound speaker to speech and made discourse whole and meaningful disintegrated with the invention of the alphabet, leaving streams of separate words detached from any context of utterance. After the alphabet, some unity was maintained by style and grammar, and by ties between vernacular languages and the communities using them; but this unity is threatened by information processing that strips the texts into their component bits. Librarians and everyone else concerned with the fate of books should read this one, though readers who like to stay calm may still prefer O. B. Hardison, Jr.'s urbane and judicious Entering the Maze (Oxford, 1981). Leslie Armour, Univ. of Ottawa, Canada
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From the Publisher

"What Illich and Sanders have done...is to trace the advent and spread of the written word...and analyze the effects the switch from an oral to a written tradition has had on both the inner life of the individual and the collective life of the society."--JoAnne Gutin, The Voice (Berkeley, California)
‹  Return to Product Overview