Drawing, writing and calligraphy
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My concern in this chapter is with drawing and writing. We draw lines as well as write them, and in each case the line is the trace of a manual gesture. But what is the difference between these gestures? Where does drawing end and writing begin? If, in the history of the line, writing was progressively differentiated from drawing, then how is this reﬂected in the changing capacities and performances of the human hand? To make a start in answering these questions, I want to review four different ways in which writing and drawing might be distinguished. Here they are, boldly stated. First, writing is in a notation; drawing is not. Secondly, drawing is an art; writing is not. Thirdly, writing is a technology; drawing is not. Fourthly, writing is linear; drawing is not. None of these distinctions, as it turns out, is entirely trustworthy. But it pays to pursue them, since a number of important issues can be clariﬁed along the way.