Page:Theory and Practice of Handwriting.djvu/32

From Wikisource
Jump to navigation Jump to search
This page has been validated.

to the writers themselves we get such a number of debilitated and deformed victims so seriously affected in lungs, spine or eyes as to create a feeling of alarm in medical and educational circles and even in Departments and Councils.

Eminent Medical Gentlemen have pursued their investigations into the question of postures in schools with great ability patience and success. Such experts as Barnard, Cohn, Carpenter, Carter, Coindet Reuss, Lorenz, Smith have been indefatigably working, with the outcome of a unanimous pronouncement that all the ills which initiated the inquiry are traceable to the postures assumed in and required by the Slanting writing.

One writer says "The postures of young people assumed in the sloping writing are one of the chief factors in the production of spinal curvature."

Another declares these postures to be "without doubt recognisable as one of the most frequent causes of crooked growth." Were this the only effect it would be more than enough to justify an official inquiry into the whole question; but when equally dismal testimony is borne to the injury of other organs (notably the eyes) and the interference with other functions, the urgency of the case becomes irresistible.

Vertical Writing is the only specific for these abnormal postures and their train of disastrous consequences. The elaboration of the argument in support of this statement will be found in the able analysis detailed in Appendix II at the end of this volume. The material difference between this Upright or Perpendicular Style and Slanting Writing is in the Direction of the Downstrokes of the letters; in the former being definitely and absolutely Vertical in the latter indefinitely and variously Sloped or Oblique. It is incredible what a difference this slight and seemingly insignificant alteration in the down strokes makes, and what an effect it exerts upon the writer. When found in conjunction with the minor characteristics of the system, viz. short loops, minimum thickness and continuity the results are almost magical.

Before detailing the several Hygienic merits of Upright Pen-

See also Report of French Commission, by Dr. Javal (Physiology of Writing, Pocket Pedagogical Library, No. 2).