FAQ about handwriting analysis

Frequently Asked Questions about Handwriting Analysis

Does the copybook pattern an individual learns in school permanently shape their handwriting style?

Of course, our early education has a role to play in the development of our handwriting. However, it does not give us with a permanent script style.  If you compare your old school exercise books to your current correspondence, you will notice that many things have changed. The impact of our early teachers fades over time, and we insert our own particular tastes into our script. Any remaining parts of the original copy book styles are likely to be elements that we find comfortable or convenient to utilize, and thus fit in with our genuine personalities.   As a rule, the more original-minded a person is, the more drastically and quickly he will depart from the childhood style.

My handwriting fluctuates throughout the day, so how can any study of it be considered reliable?

In truth, the amount of features in a person’s handwriting that vary over such a period of time is disproportionately small and predictable to a trained analyst. You’ll learn to recognize and contextualize characteristics such transient irritation, anxiousness, or emotional reaction to words or concepts in the text.

In actuality, the shifting elements in handwriting only represent a minor proportion of the entire. The underlying characteristics of a human never change, and only the character of the individual changes. Interesting hypnosis experiments have backed up this assertion. When a hypnotized person is instructed to assume a different persona, the qualities of his handwriting alter almost instantly. If he is asked to be an emperor, he will write with all the pomp and majesty that he believes is characteristic of a ruler’s handwriting. If he is asked to write as a child, he will do so with the clumsy effort of an infant scribe.

Do men’s and women’s handwriting styles differ enough to allow for gender identification?

In a single word, no. A handwriting analyzer may have made an informed estimate regarding the gender of an unknown writer many decades ago, when women were believed to be less extroverted, less ambitious, and less forceful. Such sexist attitudes have been put to rest in the present period, and the parity between the sexes’ scripts is so strong that it is nearly impossible to tell them apart.  Some analysts claim to be able to do so, but statistical data tends to refute such claims; in general, their outcomes are no better than those obtained from random guesswork.

Can illness be diagnosed in a subject’s handwriting?

Certain systems of handwriting analysis claim incredible powers of detection where medical matters are concerned. Some experts believe that they can see specific diseases and illness in handwriting – the fact that they include the diagnosis of tumours and cancers as part of their capabilities should demonstrate the unreasonable nature of their claims.  Kanfer achieved a high rate of success (which cannot be fairly ignored) with his process which identified potential cancer cases -but it must be stressed that: (a) he never claimed that he had defined an actual test for cancer -he referred to his research as a technique for predicting susceptibility to that kind of disease; (b) it falls outside of our range of studies, being a microscopic analysis.

If we confine ourselves to logical deductions, it is possible to detect some conditions quite readily – for example, mental exhaustion or nervous debility can (with caution and supporting evidence) be identified.  Let’s say that you receive a handwriting sample from a 30 year-old man, which exhibits marked tremors (shaky writing). You must ask yourself why a young man is displaying the kind of stroke formations which you’d normally expect to find in the script of a much older person.

Could a dishonest person disguise his handwriting?

It is virtually impossible for a person, whatever his motive may be, to disguise his writing. In the case of character-analysis, the writer would have to know which parts of his script to alter in order to give a better impression.  This kind of deception is complicated by the fact that it is not really possible for anyone to write fluently in an assumed manner for even a complete line.  In police investigations which involve questioned documents, anonymous letters and the like, the suspect is simply made to write continuously until any possible resistance to his natural style of writing has been eliminated.

One of the most interesting areas for graphologies is crime solving. Why? Because if an employer selects someone who a graphologist advised against, it may take a long time for the employer to discover the graphologist was correct, because unfavorable features don’t usually show up immediately. However, in crime solving, the information provided by the graphologist can often assist catch the criminal swiftly, therefore the graphologist often sees the fruits of his labor right soon.

What are some of graphology’s applications?

Graphology may undoubtedly be used in psychology. It would be fantastic if every psychologist could first examine a patient’s handwriting before proceeding. A graphologist trained psychologist would learn more about a patient in five minutes than he would in two years of twice-weekly visits to the doctor’s office. He or she would know whether the patient was an introvert or an extravert, expressive or repressive, stable or not, schizophrenic or psychotic, manic-depressive, drug or alcohol dependent, physically unwell, and more.

And if a psychologist asked his patients to write about their life, such as their jobs and families, the psychologist would obtain invaluable and immediate insight into their underlying feelings in these areas, which may otherwise go undetected for a long period. A woman, for example, may not be aware of her anger toward her husband. But every time she writes his name, it’s strewn with errors, overly angular, unreadable, or out of sync with the rest of her work.

People in the field of social work must make decisions on whether or not other people should be treated, whether or not they should stay on probation, whether or not they should receive welfare, whether or not their children should be taken away from them, and so on. How much more information would social workers have if they were familiar with graphology and could apply it? For example, graphology could assist in determining whether or not a parent was ready to reclaim his or her child. If the person’s handwriting proved that he or she was still incompetent, unstable, or addicted to drugs or alcohol, he or she would be unfit to be a parent.

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