Schrift und Schriftlichkeit / Writing and its Use. Band 2
Modern societies are inconceivable without writing and written texts. Written texts control our lives. People's social status is largely dependent on the ability to read and write and the extent to which they participate in written discourses. Differences in writing systems are mirrored in different social views of the value of writing and written texts. Thus, the scope of the Handbook is very broad. It includes all people who use or have used writing, all languages which have developed a written as well as a spoken form of language, all groups and individuals whose lives have been and are determined by the interaction with writing and written texts. Hitherto, research into writing and its use has been conducted within the confines of individual disciplines, and for this reason there is no general theory of writing or a systematic interdisciplinary exchange of ideas. It is the aim of the present Handbook to remedy this defect. The Handbook contains some 150 articles, which present historical, cultural and fuctional aspects of writing and written texts, deal with social processes of standardisation and alphabetisation in different countries, characterise models of the psychological processes involved in reading and writing and acquisition of the skills of reading and writing, document selected writing systems, using tools provided by modern linguistic research into written systems, and describe special scripts. Comprehensive indexes of topics and names strengthen the interdisciplinary links.