lunes, 10 de agosto de 2015

La función epistemológica de la escritura

"The magic of writing arises not so much from the fact that writing serves as a new mnemonic device, an aid to memory, as from the fact that writing may serve an important epistemological function. Writing not only helps us remember what was thought and said but also invites us to see what was thought and said in a new way. It is a cliché to say that there is more to writing than the abc's and more to literacy than the ability to decode words and sentences. Capturing that "more" is the problem. I have suggested that it is the ability to step into, and on occasion to step out again, from this new world, the world on paper" (p,xv-xvi)

The theory I have tried to formulate was an outgrowth of two lines of interest which I began to think may be related. They were children's changing understandings of the relation between "what was said" and "what was meant" - changes I associated with reading and  interpreting texts - and my interest in the possible relations between protestantism, early modem science and mentalistic psychology. Wouldn't it be interesting, I thought, if it could be shown that changes in the great social movements of the early modern period could be traced to altered practice and understanding of reading and interpretation, Perhaps Luther, Galileo and Descartes shared a common but new way of reading - of relating what was said to what was meant by it! But even to pose such questions required some analysis of just what scripts and writing systems are, how they relate to speech, how they are read, how those ways of reading changed, how ways of reading called for new distinctions, new awareness and new modes of thinking. And finally, the announced topic of this book, how the very structure of knowledge was altered by the attempts to represent the world on paper. (p. xvii)

 David R. Olson
The World on Paper: The conceptual and cognitive implications of writing and reading.