The 20th century was a period of great technological innovations. The new technologies invented at the end of the 19th century and beginning of the 20th century, such as the telephone, the radio, the cinematographer, the telegraph, the phonograph and the typewriter had become common home and office devices by the 1920s, which would originate massive changes in the way that people communicated. “The act of communication – once experienced as a relatively integrated process – must have felt as if it were suddenly rent apart, splintered into the newly separable elements of bodies, voices and words.” (WALKER, 2005, p. 1)

By the 1930s, the cinema was already the most common way of entertainment in the USA. It was also a new way of expression for the European avant-garde movements.

After World War II, the television boom! By the 1950s, every American home would already have their own entertainment device installed in the living room – fun for the whole family…

In the last two decades of the 20th century, we’ve seen the incredibly fast development of computers, turning into essential everyday tools. Now, in the 21st century, we’ve been observing the growth of the use of internet and the massive changes that it has promoted – news ways of interaction, communication, and expression.

It is undeniable that technological advances have always influenced literature. But this time, something different is happening. Never before had the corporeality of the books been threatened. Now we have e-books, and also specific gadgets, like Kindle and the new iPad, which transform the experience of reading a book. 

Having this in mind, how do the advances in the field of technology influence the reading and writing of literature nowadays? How can we approach issues related to authorship and narrative in this digital era?


April 24, 2010. Uncategorized.

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