Script and Scribble: The Rise and Fall of Handwriting
Script and Scribble:
The Rise and Fall of Handwriting
by Kitty Burns Florey
$22.95 List Price
One day each week in grade school, I took pen in hand to practice penmanship. I painstakingly traced letters of the alphabet and made long strings of o’s that looked like Slinkys when completed. My teacher would rap my arm, insisting I conform to the prescribed Palmer Method position. Those circles—and the exhortation “Wider, wider, wider, rounder, rounder, rounder”—are inscribed in my hand even today. Kitty Burns Florey also turns to childhood memories to enliven Script and Scribble, her pithy account of the history of handwriting. It makes sense: We never forget our earliest experiences making our mark. The act is intimate, physical, and integral to developing a sense of being in the world, alert to communicative possibilities.
Florey begins, of course, with the Sumerians and Egyptians and their pictograms; the
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