chapter  6
14 Pages

Document Analysis

ByPatrick Love, New York University

Newspapers, maps, menus, bills, and billboards, numerous documents swirl about us. Flyers, magazines, instructions, postcards, and contracts are no longer merely methods of communication or documentation; documents are part of the fabric of our world. The quantity and pervasiveness of documents in society have grown throughout history. The development of writing instruments and paper caused one surge in the number of documents being produced, the printing press another. During the past century, the advent of radio, television, video, compact disks, and cyberspace has extended and enlarged the definition of document. However, despite predictions about the demise of the printed word, advances in recording, production, printing, reproduction, storage, and retrieval capabilities have provoked an exponential growth in both the number of written documents and the pervasiveness of the role of documents in the functioning of everyday life.