It's a theory that the act of writing is sometimes more than simply the expression of a thought in textual form, but the equivalent of the brain outsourcing some of the thinking process. There are thoughts that cannot be thought or even exist without the intervention of the written word. Writing isn't just organization, memory storage, or even clarification of thoughts that are already there; the act of writing is a requirement for the thought to even exist.
I remember reading about it in college (I don't remember the discipline it came out of, but I think its birth was out of cognitive theory and how the brain works), but there was an implication that once the ability to communicate with the written word is acquired, it (theoretically) increases the capacity for abstract thought because (possibly?) it's a way for the brain to communicate with itself that it can't accomplish without it.
I found some articles that hit on some of it, but the focus in most of them is the use of writing to expand existing thought and make connections between disparate ideas that are already there but require refinement, or the development of critical thinking skills, but not idea that the brain uses writing itself in the creation of thought process.
...Christ, I swear this is not the result of a mescaline and tequila night, though admittedly, I'd love the excuse.
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