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Oscar Worthy Gadgets: Atonement's Typewriter

Oscar Worthy Gadgets: Atonement's Typewriter

Needless to say while writing Atonement, Ian McEwan was not contemplating ways to incorporate technology into the story. And who can blame him? Set in 1935, big inventions of that year were the "Supreme" Pedestal Hair Dryer and the Moving Coil Speaker. Talk about exciting. Although the typewriter is obviously a vintage gadget, it's an Oscar worthy gadget indeed. For much of the 20th century, typewriters were important tools in business, journalism, and paved the way for more modern and advanced word processing devices — like the one you are using today. They also came in handy when writing the occasional dirty love letter, as in the case of Atonement. Who wouldn't want a love letter from Robbie Turner delivered with the romanticism of the old fashioned type? Sigh.

Not only was the typewriter an important prop in the story of Atonement, it was also an important character. A character that became more engraved when the sounds of the machine were incorporated into the soundtrack, setting the stage for emotion when you heard the ticking of the keys. Taking such a low tech gadget and turning it into something so hi-fi is a super creative way to bring the classic gadget into the 21st century.

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Join The Conversation
Jude-C Jude-C 7 years
I love typewriters, too. There's something so enchantingly substantial about the sound and movement of them, and watching each letter get stamped onto the page. Also, thanks for the bonus James McAvoy pic.
raieven raieven 7 years
drool.
kitkatherine kitkatherine 7 years
i love typewriters - too bad my mom stoel my nifty old one and took it to work
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