COVID-19 Kills Cursive


Image by Katie Phillips on Pixabay

Cursive: a fancier form of hand-writing that is typically used for letters and signatures.

Already on the decline as technology switches people over to typing and makes writing obsolete in comparison, cursive penmanship may go entirely extinct after the COVID-19 pandemic passes over.

With school buildings across the nation shut down for the rest of the year and the education system switched over to virtual learning, the COVID-19 pandemic and resulting quarantine have drastically decreased the use of handwriting even more. With almost all assignments being online and then sent to teachers, most students are typing all of their work. Other than school and personal journals that are not kept online, most students no longer write by hand at home. In fact, the only time most children and young adults ever write by hand nowadays is to fill out government, banking, and medical documents.

However, with banking, government and state paperwork, and school, as well as official tests, all moving to online documentation and interaction, as well as people suggesting that virtual learning and online business become the new normal for the future, writing may become a method and skill of the past. More specifically, cursive writing, which has been on the decline for the past few years already, may completely disappear.

While cursive fonts are offered on Microsoft and Google Docs, the teaching of it may no longer be a part of the educational system, especially if everything switches over to virtual learning. Most people will say that there’s no need to teach a style of writing when everyone types everything, and they aren’t wrong. However, we should not abandon a style of writing that is centuries old, nor should we abandon the skill of writing in general.

With the newest generations already tech-wizards, COVID-19 has drastically influenced online society. (Image by Free-Photos from Pixabay)

As a student and passionate writer, I couldn’t agree more that typing is so convenient. It’s much faster than writing by hand. There are no mistakes that can’t be fixed by an undo button or a backspace key while keeping the neatness of the document; grammar and spelling errors are checked by the document itself; and there are additional add-on programs available to edit and check people’s documents for them. A text message and an email get sent faster than a letter through the mail, and there’s the benefit of not wasting paper or having to find a pen. 

However, a change toward virtual learning and online interaction between organizations and people doesn’t have to be the death of writing by hand and cursive, nor should it be. In fact, everyone knows that writing will actually coexist with technology because everyone fears the day the power will go out or an E.M.P. attack will leave us without access to the Internet, but will cursive survive and work alongside technology?

Writing by hand dates all the way back to the use of feathers and ink. (Image by Лариса Мозговая from Pixabay)

Going back to the days of feathers and ink, cursive has always been an important part of human culture, including the signing of critical American documents used to create this great nation. In fact, cursive existed long before print and printing were around. However, penmanship classes have become rare, and they are primarily taught at private schools, and public schools only briefly touch upon the subject. As more and more people grow up without learning cursive or more than just their own signature, the use of it is rapidly on the decline. Almost all public texts, such as news headlines, articles, subtitles, signs, and advertisements, are in print rather than cursive. Even books only use cursive if the author inserted a fictional letter, relic, or sign. 

Combined with a major reform and push toward typing due to the COVID-19, cursive will almost disappear within the newest generation or two.