CMNS 110 Lecture Notes - Lecture 4: Oral Tradition, Marshall Mcluhan, Orality

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Ex: religion people could now interpret religious documents independently rather than having someone else interpret them for them: orality is still important in contemporary society* Testimony in courts must still be given orally. Orality is still important in public & political debate. Graduate studies must complete an oral examination. Marriage ceremonies have an important verbal component. Although orality is still important in contemporary society, it is subordinate to literacy, which dominates our society. Orality leaves you less time to reflect on the quality of what is being said. People can dissect arguments or statements more easily when they are recorded in writing. Milman perry discovered that the peculiar way in which homer writes is due to the fact that his writings had previously been memorized and recited. Poetry is much easier to remember than prose. Homer"s writings retained characteristics of orality while it was in a literate form.

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