Monday, February 28, 2011

How Would You Put it?

Have you ever thought of something that other people never seem to notice or understand? Naturally, as humans we seek to communicate and express ourselves; and we are able to do so through talking, art, music, design, and most commonly writing. Writing has significantly affected every person alive, whether they realize it or not. While constantly evolving and changing our universe, writing is one of the most important tools that can be owned.

Writing has always been a global phenomenon and is constantly becoming more and more accessible. Starting with the marvel of human language; then paintings on caves and carvings on tablets; then books, and then the ability to publish and talk to the masses; and then writing through technology (keeping our eyes glued to constantly streaming information, knowledge, arguments, and ideas every nanosecond). All of these changes drastically move our world and allow us to acquire any sort of written information anytime. You can practically become a master of any subject just by doing a few Google searches and maybe some library visits. This era has literally been dubbed as “the Information Age,” which is vitally because writing has brought us to this point. Thanks to all of the figures in the past who have sought to express themselves, the knowledge we seek is almost always within reach.

Because of the immense use of writing in our lives, it is the most prevalent way we express ourselves. It may very well be a natural tendency for us as humans to articulate what we are thinking and feeling, and writing largely helps us do that. Language is all around us. We talk, we text, we read, we write, we post, we tweet, we research, we share. Look around you -- words are everywhere. We’ve gotten so used to having words all around us that expressing ourselves in words can often become second nature. Many peoples’ biggest challenge is organizing all of these words into an actual piece of writing. Also, the “busy work” styles and harsh criticisms from many negative educational experiences have contributed to how challenging writing can be for us. Thankfully, it is completely possible with plenty of practice and good instruction – i. e. Holly Van Houten: She is wonderful! With the ability to express yourself through writing, you have a tool within you that is mightier than the sword!

Along with this mightiness of expression also comes deception. Everyone has experienced being deceived before, and we know that it comes in all shapes and sizes. Often the root and effect of persuasion can be beneficial, but with too much deception masking it, the result can be disastrous. Some major examples are: Socrates, William Shakespeare, J. K. Rowling, Edgar Allan Poe, Adolf Hitler, various politicians, newspaper columnists, bloggers, and maybe even you – in everyday conversation. Whether they have good or bad intentions, these writers definitely have power through their work. These are only a few examples and every writer, new or old, big or small, moves society in one direction or another. Deception and persuasion are not novel ideas. Even in Ancient Greece, the “Sophists” (“soph” meaning wisdom) were a group of teachers/public speakers who used the delicate tool of persuasion. They were discriminated against because they did not value truth so much, but they started an intellectual uproar that got people thinking. Deception may not be a positive thing, but understanding it helps us gain perspective of an argument and realize when we are being deceived.

Sometimes in writing we actually expect to be deceived and that is what we like to call fiction, which can often expose us to even more knowledge. There have been many times in history where fiction has been hated, discriminated, and banned because it was said to create false decieving realities. The government still bans many books in schools today. Thankfully, the rejection of fiction has grown considerably smaller. Now fiction not only offers pleasure and entertainment, but it allows us to look at situations in a hypothetical way. Fiction can express emotions and valuable ideas that are very real, relive and premeditate real situations, and enlighten us altogether.

With the ability to write, you can change the world. Writing can determine if someone will live or die, how to live, how to see the universe, why to do things, how to do things, where you are, how you feel, and precisely what is “sup”. Where this world would be without writing is a mystery. 


  1. Hey Karlie. Sup?

    No, seriously, this post is fantastic. Everything seems to be organized perfectly. I love the metaphor of expression as a pen "within you." The entire analysis of deception is excellent, and I like the way it segues into the topic of fiction, and then a discussion of censorship. I can't believe none of the rest of us (including me) thought to mention censorship of writing!

    Yes, writing is so important that authoritarian governments feel the need to control it. Writing is so important that…oh wait, you covered all of that in your conclusion!

    What's that? Criticism? You want constructive criticism?

    Uh…okay…well, you used "weather" twice when you meant "whether." First and fourth paragraphs. That's pretty much all I can think of.

  2. Hi Karlie,

    Worth the wait! :)

    This is such a thoughtful post. The power of writing IS almost always underestimated. Too often people don't understand how easily the written word can manipulate, deceive, persuade, inspire, etc. Whether the effect is positive or negative, writing most certainly has an effect. Banning and burning books has been a consistent trademark of tyrants because books have so much power.

    You have a few minor sentence structure/word choice issues here, but I'm guessing that has much to do with the late night posting :) Overall, great first post!

  3. Hey Karlie,
    I loved the post, you had a good thesis and good topic sentences. There were a few sentence structure issues, but, late night posting :(.

  4. I think Hitler although he killed millions of people he was brilliant he persuaded people to hate the Jews that really demonstrates the power of writing in that case it may not have been used for good. well anyway I loved the format and how you proved all your points I really feel like you met the requirements for this assignment.

  5. "With the ability to write, you can change the world."
    Very nicely said!