Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Ramus, Method, and the Decay of Dialogue: From the Art of Discourse to the Art of Reason
Use the Amazon App to scan ISBNs and compare prices.
The Amazon Book Review
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
Top Customer Reviews
Adrian Johns' forward in this edition, asks "Why study Ramus?" and indicates the cultural phenomenon that occurred when Ramus's charts went viral in the mid to late 16th century. He summarizes Ong's explanation regarding this translation of thought into visually oriented branching diagrams printed on a page. The summary addresses Ramus contribution to "eye" oriented approaches (vs. verbal / auditory or "ear"), attention to steps or methods in arriving at a conclusions or outcomes, and foundation for many succeeding educators and thinkers such as Descartes and Newton.
In addition to Johns' forward, the inclusions of Ong's preface for an earlier paperback edition and his original forward are very helpful. In the former, Ong mentions that had he done this work later he would have included attention to the resemblance of Ramus' binary dichotomized charts with those of digital computer diagrams. For Ong, this subterranean parallel was as if Ramus was writing programs 400 years before computers with similar consequences to what is occurring today in the modern world.
Although quite dense and detailed, reading Ong's Ramus yields many rewards and insights into the transition to the modern mind.
Basically, the second volume, RAMUS AND TALON INVENTORY, is an annotated bibliography of the more than 750 printed volumes by Peter Ramus and his followers and critics that Ong had tracked down in more than 100 different libraries -- almost all of the volumes in Latin.
The year after Ong died in 2003 at the age of 90, the University of Chicago Press reissued his landmark 1958 book RAMUS, METHOD, AND THE DECAY OF DIALOGUE: FROM THE ART OF DISCOURSE TO THE ART OF REASON in a paperback edition with a new foreword by Adrian Johns. It is a book that still repays careful study.
In it Ong works with the aural-visual contrast that he acknowledges he borrowed from the French philosopher Louis Lavelle (1883-1951), most notably from his book LA PAROLE ET L'ECRITURE, 2nd ed. (1942). The aural-visual contrast is also known as the sound-sight contrast.
For Ong, words are basically sound.
But written words involve sight.
In addition, written words are written in space.
For Ong, the spatialization of thought expressed implicitly in written words in space on parchment or another substance, and the quantification of thought expressed in certain words in logic combine to make the world-as-view sense of life a heady brew, especially in print culture in Western culture.
For centuries in the history of formal logic, the quantification of thought was expressed in words. Eventually however, as Ong explains the quantification of thought became expressed in symbols - in symbolic logic.Read more ›