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October 11, 2006


Bill S.

I never really understood the need for cursive, myself. It always seemed to slow me down, and seemed wholly cosmetic. At a certain point in junior high, I decided that I didn't need it at all, and have made do with printing my letters ever since. As far as I'm concerned, it makes what I write easier to read. My only regret is that I can't print my signature, which I have taken great pains to make as illegible as humanly possible.

Kate Gladstone

Bill — you CAN print your signature. (More precisely, you MAY: without the censure or forbiddance of any law.)
As any attorney will gladly explain to you (or as you can verify yourself through legal material at the Handwriting Repair web-site, below), the legality of signatures does not depend upon whether they use a particular style of letter, whether they join all (or any) letters, etc., etc., etc.

In sum, Bill, your third-grade teacher lied to you when changing your handwriting to cursive. He or she misrepresented the law of the land.

To learn more about this matter (and the case against "cursive" in general), visit the Handwriting Repair web-site at http://www.learn.to/handwrite — specifically, visit the site's "Frequently Asked Questions" page and look for the question on signatures. (I hope you'll also read the rest of the site: particularly the page named "Home of the Handwriting Rebels.")

Kate Gladstone
The Handwriting Repairwoman

John H.

This is curious, both as a cultural transitionary phenomenon and as a topic on developmental process. In my brief lifetime, I've touched most sides of the subject. I quit cursive immediately upon leaving the third grade. In my mind, my cursive was ugly, inconsistent and difficult to follow. Hardly worth the pursuit compared to the impeccable neatness of my print, which I used exclusively well into college. In an odd turn, at around age 23, I deliberately began to retrain myself in cursive, driven mostly on the basis of personal challenge but also by the effort to 'add humanity' to my personal drafts and correspondences. Within about a year, I had achieved a consitency, rhythm and grace of form with which I am to this day very content. Now, tweleve years later at age 36, I continue to use both forms of handwriting about equally and have the personal opinion that both my handwriting styles are as equally effective and attractive. As a writer, I realize this may not translate with the same personal value in others; however, I wholeheartedly believe that my intentionality in the pursuit and refinement of cursive handwriting, even as a young adult, was integral to my development as a writer, thinker and communicator.

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