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Worlds of Reference - Tom McArthur

Worlds of Reference

Paperback Published: 13th June 1988
ISBN: 9780521314039
Number Of Pages: 244

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Worlds of Reference is a history of dictionaries, encyclopedias and reference materials, but it is also far more than that, because it is concerned with the growth of civilisation, education and culture - and particularly how the human race learned to store information beyond the brain. It looks at how our species moved from being able to communicate only orally and to store information only in the head (rote memorisation) to the evolution of technologies for external reference: clay- and cunieform, reed-and-hieroglyph, bamboo-and-ideogram, parchment-and-alphabet, codices, books, pages, columns and so forth through the print revolution to the current electronic revolution. Along the way it looks at how this has affected languages like Latin, french, and English and people"s attitudes to those languages - and to words and the listing of information about words. This intensely human subject is as compelling and important today as any account of kings, queens, wars and social upheaval.

Mind, word and world
Knowing, referring and recording: storing information beyond the brain
Information and World 3: in the beginning was the Word
The Ancient World
Containers of knowledge: the first reference technologies
Systems for knowledge: school and letter, book and library
The taxonomic urge: class, classic and classification
Missionaries and monasteries: reference and reverence
The Medieval World
Faith versus reason: summations of truth
The elites of knowledge: universitas
The Early Modern World
All knowledge for all men: the omne scibile and the printing press
Theme versus alphabet: the roots of lexicography
A blurring of languages: Latin and the vernaculars
The Modern World
The legislative urge: authoritative wordbooks
Reference and revolution: the encyclopedia proper
Thematic lexicography: word order and world order
Alphabetic lexicography: the unendable dictionary
Universal education: dictionaries for the people
Semantic fields and conceptual universes: the unshapeable lexis
Tensions and trends: overt alphabet, covert theme
Tomorrows World
Shaping things to come: the priests of High Technology
Knowledge, knowledge everywhere: planetary network, global book
Table of Contents provided by Publisher. All Rights Reserved.

ISBN: 9780521314039
ISBN-10: 0521314038
Audience: Tertiary; University or College
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Number Of Pages: 244
Published: 13th June 1988
Country of Publication: GB
Dimensions (cm): 24.41 x 16.99  x 1.3
Weight (kg): 0.4