Orality & Literacy : The Ong Theory

Orality & Literacy theory crafted by Walter Ong sparks curiosity when talking about the ” Human Conscious.” What makes Orality and Literacy so intriguing for people who study this topic. Ong knows that this topic has a long history- about 2500 years ago. But how does this effect they way we perceive things? The text brings up an important point: ” The spoken word or oral communication of the ancient, the written word that we encounter in using contemporary technologies. All have distinctive capacities to convey ideas that they work to convey.” ( Applen) All of these ideas that Ong mentions in the article are important for not only English majors, but everyone that communicates.

Orality and Literacy

As Walter Ong states: Orality is the way we characterize speech. On the other hand, literacy is the word for written language. Both words, are an important part of human communication. The way we communicate is an important part of human nature. It shapes the way we perceive things. No two people think, write, or speak the same. This gives us originality in our words and forms of communication, something grammarians and linguists study for years. Additionally, it is important to note that the way speak, write and communicate is always changing. It has a long history, one that was previously altered and changed to what we know today. When it comes to writing, as a form of communication it can be seen as technology. Writing exists outside of our minds as well as orality and the way we communicate. It is a fascinating topic to look into and it will be constantly changing and evolving as we move towards a world of digital communication.


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