The Shallows -- Chapter 4

Submitted by Bibliofuture on Thu, 03/03/2011 - 11:09
Continuing discussion of The Shallows: What the Internet Is Doing to Our Brains In Chapter 4 Carr discusses the development of the book from the media of Sumerian cuneiform tablets, Egyptian scrolls, and most similar to the design of the book - the wax tablet. Alongside the technology Carr details the development of syntax, most importantly the transition from "scriptura continua" (61) to word separation. Carr quotes John Saenger from his book Space between Words : word separation "freed the intellectual faculties of the reader ... even readers of modest intellectual capacity could read more swiftly, and they could understand an increasing number of inherently more difficult texts ... (63). The following isn't in chapter 4, but I believe basically sums up Carr's thesis: "The Internet doesn't change our intellectual habits against our will. But change them it does" (92). ( the second sentence is kind of Yoda-like isn't it?) * According to Saenger word separation helped free the intellectual faculties of the reader. Can any corollaries by made about the Internet? e.g., does its quick reference nature allows for more brain memory availability for deeper information retention?