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Does Writing Have a Future?$
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Vilém Flusser

Print publication date: 2011

Print ISBN-13: 9780816670222

Published to Minnesota Scholarship Online: August 2015

DOI: 10.5749/minnesota/9780816670222.001.0001

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(p.103) Letters
Does Writing Have a Future?

Vilém Flusser

Mark Poster

Nancy Ann Roth

University of Minnesota Press

This chapter discusses letters in relation to reading and writing. The German word Brief (letter) means “short writing” and in English “short written summary.” But it is no longer used in German with this meaning. Briefs. The reference is to texts that are not intended for the public, not directed to a publisher—even though many letters have been published, and many more, apparently directed to a specific addressee, are really eyeing up a publisher. Like everything concerning celebrations, letters follow established rituals. A study of correspondence rituals from an historical, geographical, or sociocultural perspective (to say nothing of others) would make a valuable contribution to our knowledge of society. Writing letters is closely related to writing poetry. In addition to the rules of grammar and orthography, the writer of letters is charged with others (such as the verse form of rhyme pattern in poetry). In this context, letter writing is regarded as one of the most refined of the arts. In the face of technological progress, however, it is in decline.

Keywords:   letters, reading, writing, rituals, correspondence, poetry, grammar, orthography, letter writing

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