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Avatars of the Word : From Papyrus to Cyberspace - 98 edition

Avatars of the Word : From Papyrus to Cyberspace (ISBN10: 067400194X; ISBN13: 9780674001947)
ISBN13: 978-0674001947
ISBN10: 067400194X

This edition has also been released as:
ISBN13: 978-0674055452
ISBN10: 0674055454

Summary: The written word has been a central bearer of culture since antiquity. But its position is now being challenged by the powerful media of electronic communication. In this penetrating and witty book James O'Donnell takes a reading on the promise and the threat of electronic technology for our literate future.

In Avatars of the Word O'Donnell reinterprets today's communication revolution through a series of refracted comparisons with earlier revolutionary pe ...show moreriods: the transition from oral to written culture, from the papyrus scroll to the codex, from copied manuscript to print. His engaging portrayals of these analogous epochal moments suggest that our steps into cyberspace are not as radical as we might think. Observing how technologies of the word have affected the shaping of culture in the past, and how technological transformation has been managed, we regain models that can help us navigate the electronic transformation now underway. Concluding with a focus on the need to rethink the modern university, O'Donnell specifically addresses learning and teaching in the humanities, proposing ways to seek the greatest benefit from electronic technologies while steering clear of their potential pitfalls.

James O'Donnell's site for Avatars of the Word
This site offers excellent supplementary materials-- prepared by the author--that illustrate and extend the discussion of issues raised in Avatars of the Word


...show less

Edition/Copyright: 98
Cover: Paperback
Publisher: Harvard University Press
Published: 05/05/2000
International: No

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Cumbreland, Rhode Island, U.S.A. 2000 Ppbk Very Good. No Dj 8vo. pp. 210, "O'Donnell demonstrates that a future repository for knowledge cannot be based on the model of the "codex" (the first recogn ...show moreizable form for the traditional published book). Instead, we will be in a community where information is decentralized, no longer dependent on a finite circle of publishers. The importance of this shift can't be understated: countries base economics on centralized institutions, and--just as importantly--these places have psychological sway within us as keepers of our common humanity." ...show less
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