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Vernacular EloquenceWhat Speech Can Bring to Writing$
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Peter Elbow

Print publication date: 2012

Print ISBN-13: 9780199782505

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: March 2015

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:osobl/9780199782505.001.0001

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What’s Good about Writing

What’s Good about Writing

(p.40) 2 What’s Good about Writing
Vernacular Eloquence

Peter Elbow

Oxford University Press

This chapter explores some important potentialities of writing that have not been fully developed. More specifically, it shows that writing is spatial and visual, and thus can do things that are hard or impossible in audible temporal speech; that writing helps people step outside of their language and see it as an external object; and that writing enhances privacy despite putting language into external visible space. The chapter also traces the history of the alphabet and describes the development of alphabetic writing in the Middle East.

Keywords:   writing, speech, language, privacy, alphabet, alphabetic writing, Middle East

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