Imprint and Trace: Handwriting in the Age of Technology (Hardback)
  • Imprint and Trace: Handwriting in the Age of Technology (Hardback)
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Imprint and Trace: Handwriting in the Age of Technology (Hardback)

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£25.00
Hardback 272 Pages / Published: 01/06/2010
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In today's world, written communication is a highly technical business. Most writing is composed on computer, while correspondence is largely transmitted by means of email or text message. We type our shopping orders online, blogs are our diaries and we have Facebook. Consequently, the practice that seems to be falling into neglect as a result is the physical and material act of handwriting. In "Imprint and Trace: Handwriting in the Age of Technology", Sonja Neef first uncovers the real historical resilience of handwriting. She shows us how advances in the form of the printing press (a technical form of writing) and the typewriter, for example, initiated in their wake radically new writing implements (steel-tipped feather quill, fountain-pen, ballpoint); and, she points out how current digital applications such as Tablet PCs, screensavers and handwriting recognition software stimulate new handwriting practices. Behind this intertwined relationship between the physical and the technical are posited paired conceptual principles - trace, the unique cursive line drawn by an individual hand, and imprint, the principle that handwriting needs to be serial, standardized and repeatable in order to be readable. It is the dualistic creativity of imprint and trace that leads to a series of fascinating illustrated case studies on the topics of screensavers, urban graffiti, body tattooing, and a pair of twentieth-century diaries, one by Anne Frank, the other briefly believed to have been written by Adolf Hitler. "Imprint and Trace" presents an original and distinctive re-evaluation of the relationships between handwriting and technology, and between the various imprints and traces that have defined writing throughout history. This book will appeal to readers and scholars of both media studies and critical theory, as well as to all those interested in the cultural phenomena of writing and print production past and present.

Publisher: Reaktion Books
ISBN: 9781861896537
Number of pages: 272
Weight: 757 g
Dimensions: 216 x 138 x 33 mm

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