Saturday, December 29, 2007

Have a Happy (and Literate) New Year

Happy Holidays everyone! As the new year rolls around, I wanted to throw out a link to author Doris Lessing's Nobel Prize speech. She contrasts the hunger for books - any books - felt in an impoverished African village, with the attitude in a privileged London school, where many students don't read at all and the library is half unused.

Looking around at the kids (and adults) in America today, I can see this sad lack of interest in literature, despite our country's seemingly unlimited resources. Are we so inundated with reality TV, YouTube, IMs, and text messages that we find it boring to stimulate our minds with some good old-fashioned reading?

Let's dedicate some extra time in 2008 to reading good books. It's amazing how much more a well-written novel will affect you than even the best movies and TV shows. I'm currently reading some great Hemingway and John Irving; what are you reading?


Zooomabooma said...

It's really sad that this great nation is so infatuated, in general, with the things you said: youtube, etc... plus video games and celebrity worship and more etc.

Seems most people wanna just play and be happy while broadening of the mind takes a backseat. Reading? Ha!

I personally go for non-fiction to learn about anything and everything...

I'm currently reading Wedding Of The Waters by Peter L. Bernstein about the Erie Canal and its importance on early America.

There's just no reason to stop expanding ones knowledge of where we live and the important events that have gotten us where are today and books like that one are just a drop in the bucket!

Drake said...

Hey zoomabooma, thanks for your comment - I'm glad we agree on the importance of reading. I read mostly fiction, for I love a good story, but I should take your example and read more non-fiction than I usually do (maybe that will be my New Year's resolution!).

I recently read Barack Obama's "The Audacity of Hope," which I found to be an inspiring and surprisingly informative work from a modern politician. I think the next non-fiction I read will be something on the world of quantum physics or perhaps something about ancient Greece.

Keep warm over there in Alaska, and keep on enriching your mind!