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ERIC Number: ED377511
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994-Nov
Pages: 7
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
Writing Nature in a Computer Environment.
Woodlief, Ann M.
For some reason, the idea of the nature writer at work in the open air has been exalted, and it is difficult to think that writing about nature might be compatible with computers, the ultimate indoor toy. However, for students learning to write about nature, a networked computer environment may be the best place to be, not for replacing the experience itself but for writing and communicating it. Nature writing has several distinctive characteristics as a genre which lends itself to electronic connections. First, to write about nature is to realize that words do not convey experience fully. One reason the writer writes about nature, in fact, is to try to convey the unconveyable. Thus, "word-processing" is admirably suited to the process of seeing and re-seeing, writing and re-writing--allowing the writer to revise endlessly and easily. Second, writing about nature requires knowing all the so-called "facts" of the subject, and the computer makes facts available at the touch of a finger. Third, hypertexts (texts embedded in a computer text) can enhance the process of reading for a beginner at reading nature texts. Fourth, writing about nature is a social activity, despite romantic ideas of the writer alone in the wilderness. The whole point of nature writing is rhetoric and communication. Computers offer a fast, easy way to share texts with others without the hassle of paper shuffling. (TB)
Publication Type: Opinion Papers; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A