Vassar College Digital Library
Looking through the 17th and 18th centuries and specifically the diaries of Samuel Pepys and William Byrd, I aim to explore the medium specificity in the diary as well as its particular moment in manuscript culture. Being written by hand preserves the author, it is the shortest distance of mediation from the brain to the pen. A diary is a book that happened. It transcends time and space. When the diarist dies, he takes on a new life on the shelf in the form of his diary. The best allegory for the diary is a mind palace, a place for sincere self-analysis and the preservation of movement over a lifetime. Think of the diary as a balance scale. Harmony can be achieved through oneness or through exact balance‚Äďa private yin to a public yang.
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