In "From Criticism to Creation," Professor Richards discusses the importance
of perfecting the means whereby men can understand better what they
read and hear. From there he proceeds to "The Technological Crisis,"
which sketches some of the consequences of technological advances.
In "Computer-Conveyed Instruction" he looks at the resistances and
obstructions which may hinder the use of these new powers.
"Some Glances at Current Linguistics" examines questions about language
raised by the use of computers.
"Meanings Anew" attempts to restore semantics to its due dominance in
"The Future of Poetry" explores how utterance can defend itself from
misconception. The separation of mistakes from acceptable differences
in interpretation is viewed in "Variant Readings and Misreading."
Miscomprehension and distortion arising from antagonisms between
Chinese and Western traditions are discussed in "Mencius Through the
Looking-Glass" and "Sources of Conflict."
"Toward a World English" suggests solutions to man's urgent problems
in this area, "inquiries and developments," the author says, "that-if
pushed with a tenth of the energy now being devoted to space
projects-might help with our presently mind-numbing situation."