Reimagining Writing

Philip Scranton, a Rutgers University Board of Governors Professor of History of Industry and Technology, has written a guest blog post for John Hopkins University Press on how to write for and with a colleague and friend.

When a scholarly book is finished, and before readers and critics decide what it means and what use it might have, an author (or in this case, coauthor) might well ask what’s been learned in the process. Academics write to communicate with and influence others, to be sure, but “doing the writing” usually remains an intensely personal and private affair. Whatever my work may deliver, at base I write for an audience of one, me.

Perhaps, though, the preceding sentence should be recast in past tense. Why? Because in writing Reimagining Business History, I learned how to write for and with a colleague and friend. This was new and invigorating. And let me suggest that, when entering your mid-sixties, there’s not a lot that’s new and invigorating (rather than new and disconcerting).

Posted in: Research Highlights

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