Cursive Coda

I've written quite a few posts about the horror that is cursive handwriting. The gist of those posts were that

  1. I stopped writing in cursive as soon as I could
  2. Cursive handwriting is dying out

Those posts stand up pretty well, I think, and now I have some company. Sacha Chua has a nice post that echos some of the same themes I wrote about in my posts. Like me, her cursive is, um, not the best and being a pragmatic woman she simply stopped using it. When she writes, as she does a lot in her sketchnotes for instance, she prints.

What's noteworthy is that people think her handwriting is excellent. I've seen the same thing: people think I have excellent penmanship but that's because I print. If they saw my cursive, they'd run screaming from the room. In a great comment to one of my posts, Kate Gladstone notes that the fastest and most legible handwriters avoid cursive. Instead, they use what she describes as “semi-cursive” where only some letters are joined and the printed letter forms are used.

Gladstone runs a handwriting improvement service and has a lot of useful and interesting things to say about handwriting. As I've mentioned in my posts, the question of cursive or not invokes vehement and hostile reactions on both sides. Gladstone, unlike most people commenting on the controversy, has documentable facts on her side.

Here in the U.S., school systems are abandoning cursive in increasing numbers. I don't know what the situation is in the Philippines where Chua learned to write but I'd be surprised if the situation is much different.

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