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Posted on March 30th, 2013, by

Automation has removed many unique jobs which added to the understanding of texts and allowed people to fully capture the meaning or sense of literature works of art. One of such jobs is the process of manual copying of the writing ”“ a process which provides a totally different impression than reading, though based on the same text. I have already noticed that slowing down the process of reading and reading the lyrics word by word allows to dive into the poem and to get a richer feel of it than simply reading the poem at the usual speed.

It has been measured that an average person can read at the speed of 250-300 words per minute, and copying can be done at the average speed of 22 words per minute. So, copyists spend 10+ times longer with the text, and moreover, adding kinesthetic experience to the visual impressions of reading literature works might create a totally different environment for overall human perception.

After copying the ten-line poem by Christine de Pisan’s I have tried to feel the difference between these two experiences. I believe that Petrarch’s view on the effect of copying is absolutely true: the poem has really made a deeper impression on me after copying it, and it clung into my sensory mind in a totally different way than it happened during reading. I could feel the rhymes and the word choice on every line.

It is not possible to feel how every letter connects to the next one during reading the lyrics or listening to it”¦ and I believe that during copying the text we get as close as possible to the original intention and feelings of the author ”“ because the author did the same things and wrote with the same pace as we do during copying. Those who really want to share the author’s experience and want to dwell into the author’s idea, should try to copy the whole piece of writing or at least the most precise places.


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