The Missing Ink

The Missing Ink

The Lost Art of Handwriting

Book - 2012
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Baker & Taylor
Tells of the story of the endangered art of penmanship, reflecting on what handwriting reveals about a person's personality and history while paying tribute to the warmth of a handwritten note.

McMillan Palgrave

When Philip Hensher realized that he didn't know what a close friend's handwriting looked like ("bold or crabbed, sloping or upright, italic or rounded, elegant or slapdash"), he felt that something essential was missing from their friendship. It dawned on him that having abandoned pen and paper for keyboards, we have lost one of the ways by which we come to recognize and know another person. People have written by hand for thousands of years-- how, Hensher wondered, have they learned this skill, and what part has it played in their lives?

The Missing Ink tells the story of this endangered art. Hensher introduces us to the nineteenth-century handwriting evangelists who traveled across America to convert the masses to the moral worth of copperplate script; he examines the role handwriting plays in the novels of Charles Dickens; he investigates the claims made by the practitioners of graphology that penmanship can reveal personality.

But this is also a celebration of the physical act of writing: the treasured fountain pens, chewable ballpoints, and personal embellishments that we stand to lose. Hensher pays tribute to the warmth and personality of the handwritten love note, postcards sent home, and daily diary entries. With the teaching of handwriting now required in only five states and many expert typists barely able to hold a pen, the future of handwriting is in jeopardy. Or is it? Hugely entertaining, witty, and thought-provoking,The Missing Ink will inspire readers to pick up a pen and write.

& Taylor

An award-winning novelist, reflecting on what handwriting can tell us about personality and personal history, tells of the story of this endangered art, paying tribute to the warmth of a handwritten note and inspiring readers to pick up a pen and write.

Publisher: New York : Faber and Faber, 2012
Edition: 1st American ed
ISBN: 9780865478930
Branch Call Number: 652.1 H
Characteristics: 270 p. :,ill. ;,23 cm


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Jun 19, 2016

The author assumes a great familiarity on the part of the reader with various scripts, but really fails to connect different script examples (these are examples of X and see how they differ from examples of Y) with the commentary in his text. The reader often left in a curious and unpleasant limbo.

Sunflower19 Jun 27, 2013

So far I am enjoying this book. Writing has become a lost art which is truly upsetting.
At 26 I have a penpal. We met in college and have been writing letters to each other since we were 21...we write more then we text.
Can't wait to finish reading this!

hgeng63 Jun 24, 2013

A case of the subject matter being more interesting than its execution in this bk.


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