This volume explores spoken and written discourse in English, accounting for the cultural, social and linguistic implications of variation across speech and writing. It outlines the history of orality and literature from various culturaland historical standpoints, explaining why this interplay is the driving force behind far-ranging ideologies, which have contributed to the division betweenoraland written cultures. The latter have deployed their repertoire of literacy resourcesto educate but also dominate illiterate populations. Speech and writing are subsequently analysed from a linguistic standpoint, discussing a range of genres and their related linguistic features, such as contextualization vs. autonomy, presence vs. absence, involvement vs. detachment, repetition vs. concisionand evanescence vs. permanence. Speech and writing, however, are not studied as opposing or conflicting notions, but are seen as flexible, interacting language modes that are enactedin different configurations and along different dimensions in texts. Finally, the book singles out aspects relevant to the contemporary world of web-based communication, reviewing linguistic features and discussing how these are changed and altered in digital environments. _x000D_
Speech and writing are still significant linguistic paradigms that shed light on a range of cultural and linguistic meaning-making events.