ERIC Number: ED331318
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1991-Mar-27
Symbiosis, Printspeak, and Politics: Topics in the Orality and Literacy Debate.
Bhola, H. S.
Orality and literacy are not antithetical, rather they exist in a complex symbiosis at the individual, family, and community levels. Such a symbiosis is inevitable and appears in all kinds of institutions, including economic, political, social, cultural, and educatonal institutions. Out of this relationship, "printspeak" has emerged. Printspeak is a form of oral speech that is highly formalized and has the character of being read aloud from a written record. The speaker of printspeak structures his argument as if for writing, and uses syntax and semantics peculiar to the written text. The logical is favored over the intuitive, and characteristics peculiar to oral language are greatly reduced. Because literacy is a social process, politics is part of the relationship between literacy and orality. Generally, the oral culture is disadvantaged relative to the literate culture. While literacy is not necessarily good in and of itself, acquisition of literacy does tend to engender creative discontent necessary for social change to occur. Therefore, literacy is a good in all circumstances, in all places, at all times. Literacy must be made universal. A nine-item bibliography is included. (MSE) (Adjunct ERIC Clearinghouse on Literacy Education)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at a seminar on Orality and Literacy (Bloomington, IN, March 27, 1991).