Saturday, February 12, 2005

In a letter to C. Jan Swearingen, dated April 12, 1985 (in the folder "On Photographic Literacy" 1985, Dec.), Ong explains that he thought the essay "Writing and the Evolution of Consciousness" would address weaknesses and problems intelligence tests "presented in writing....by literates who are unfamiliar with or even unaware of the ways in which the orally grounded intelligence works -- ways which are by no means simple or unsophisticated."

Ong makes it clear in this letter, and in other places, that while he does address his critics directly on occasion -- such as in the exchange with Gee, he preferred to continue writing articles that dealt with but did not specifically identify particular critics. Unfortunately, this gave the impression, or allowed critics to claim, that he ignored their charges.

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