Handwriting headed for history?

TLS has a nice piece on two books at opposite ends of the spectrum with regards to the excellence of handwriting. One thinks and indeed hopes it will go away. The other celebrates its artfulness.

I am confident that handwriting has a future, but that future might be as an artist’s tool – as indeed was its origin. What will be lost, is a mode of expression, and it will be lost primarily for those without the inclination to learn the skill.

As the article puts it:

For those with a natural difficulty in being legible, the keyboard is a saving grace. Others too prefer it as their medium of self-expression. Yet, it is a “self” sublimated to the font choices of the corporation whose software you use. Of course, when we write by hand, we are also confined, individuality restrained by the requirements of the script, but there is a certain licence for variation and idiosyncrasy, however badly it is executed.

Money is (still) no cure for ignorance


It is the weekend, and the FT is “probing” another strain of conspicuous consumption: bespoke libraries. (Is there a wholesale version?)

WTF?

Paying people to assemble a library in your home is like paying them to hunt, kill, prepare and eat food for you – leaving you with some rotting antlers to hang on a wall.

For the more serious bibliophile, it might even be akin to hire someone else to fall in love, have sex, raise a family and send you the photoalbums to display as your own.

The pleasure of a personal library (or any private collection) is foremost in the process – the search, the read, your autonomous curation – without which the display is pure theatrical scenery. Glancing over the scenery offers you no memories, no connection of your own reflections, impulses, ideas and revelations – no history. The epic story of assembling your “bespoke collection” is that you sent some nerd an e-mail, he showed up at your house with a truck, you paid him a princely sum, and now you have a room full of inked paper.

But the worst part is that it seems completely counterproductive. Instead of being seen as well-read and intellectual, you increase the risk of proving that you are not. Imagine the embarassment of being asked by a house guest your opinions of a book in your personal library, and not being able to offer any.

It is like purchasing stage 4 Alzheimer’s.

Read the full article at: https://www.ft.com/content/9b4a4542-1e17-11e8-a748-5da7d696ccab