“In order to truly understand the perspectives of others different from us, we need something more than knowledge alone. We need compassion, empathy and desire to engage in social discourse.
Contrary to nonfiction books, fiction books are cherished for their form as a narrative art, which employs literary locution, syntax and its plot in a way that allows new perspectives to settle in. According to Jacques Rancière, a French philosopher and social activist, fiction is valuable “due to a new balance of the powers of language, to a new way language can act by causing something to be seen and heard. Literature … is a new system of identification.” …
According to Martha Nussbaum, an American philosopher, “Literature makes us better citizens because it trains us to understand others. Narrative imagination is an essential preparation for moral interaction.” …
“Thus, reading great works of fiction turns the reader into a conscious agent of world transformation by bringing to the fore the unseen and unheard.”
More on Reading, Writing, Spying: http://www.spywriter.com ➕ http://www.facebook.com/spywriter ➕ http://www.twitter.com/spywriter
“literature has one fundamental worth that doesn’t seem to strike most people. Those of us who write, read and study in a particular language help to keep the language alive. No language can stay alive if it’s static, it has to grow by people speaking it, reading it, writing in it. With respect to the literature in a particular language, this is the progression. If today, studying stops, then tomorrow, reading stops. If reading stops, then writing stops, and if writing stops then speaking stops. And if we lose the language, we lose along with it all our sense of culture,heritage and the knowledge of a shared past which binds us together as a community. And this is especially true in case of vernacular literatures. For whatever reason, nearly half the gen-next population today shies away from reading literature in their mother tongue or even speaking in it.”
As kids and teenages go back to school, depression linked to change of environment and new challenges might kick in. Putting on headphones and locking yourself in a cocoon won’t help. Reading might:
“Teenagers who devote more time to reading books are far less likely to suffer from depression than their peers who listen to music.”
…”researchers recognise[d] large association between exposure to music and depression”, and “that reading was associated with less likelihood of depression. This is worth emphasising because overall in the US, reading books is decreasing, while nearly all other forms of media use are increasing”.
On the “woes that have befallen our country on the social, legal, moral and even political arenas, and the role of literature in creating awareness and helping curb these evils and misdeeds”:
“That the eacher is the dispenser of morality in society is undisputed. Literature teachers are expected, through poetry, novels, short stories and oral literature, to inculcate positive morality into young minds. It is these youngsters that later grow into entrepreneurs, politicians, teachers and other members of society.”
Sadly, “We teachers no longer indulge learners in the journey of discovery of the intricacies of literature. Instead we take a short cut by relying on guide books and concentrating on the completion of the syllabus. The best the learners can do is to regurgitate what has been passed down to them. We are doing the nation a disservice.”
“I believe morality cannot be attained through legal restrictions but through the inculcation of moral consciousness in individuals, which leads to social responsibility.”
“Today our children don’t read works of imagination and the results are what we see today. Children or students who don’t ask questions in class but just take in everything the teachers feed them. Because we don’t learn to think, that is why we have students and workers who just copy and paste everything.
“Reading should not end after class or when the teacher leaves the classroom. Both parents and teachers should encourage children to read. Buying them books to read is one thing and making sure they read them is another.
“It’s high time we parents realised the big mistake we are making by taking our children to school but not encouraging them to read.
“…children and young people need good books, funny books, emotional books, fantasy books, books that enable them to think and see in new ways.
“If you live without oxygen, you suffocate. And books are the oxygen of the mind, even in these days of the internet.”
“Stories are crucial in our lives; we communicate with others using stories all the time. They’re what we tell others about ourselves. They teach us how different people handle different circumstances.”
“When a parent reads to a child, it is an intimate experience involving a strong emotion” … “many educated parents are keen to read to their children. However, they tend to force the habit or use it to teach – or sometimes test – the child’s English vocabulary.”
“This may not be the most ideal and effective strategy to foster a love for reading.”
“Experts have agreed that reading for pleasure and for its own sake is the most beneficial for children… If you want your child to be a successful reader, you should read to them for pleasure. Let the school do the teaching. It should be pure pleasure when you and your child read together. You can laugh over a story or cry over it together.”
“Another golden rule for parents is to allow their children the freedom to choose books that interest them.”
“The worst thing a parent can do is to be critical of a book which means a lot to the child.”
“It’s OK to let children read a book they love again and again. The important thing is they’re free to choose their own books.” For children who are not keen readers, it helps to find out what sparks their imagination and use that as a motivation.”
“From Reader’s Digest to Cliff’s Notes to No Fear Shakespeare, simplified novels have infiltrated American society over generations. They seem innocent enough, flaunting an “easy to read” nature meant to appeal to those less versed in complex literature and language. However, while these watered down novels may be convenient for the busy, story-oriented adult reader, they are hardly appropriate for a class focused on critical reading. They’re a skewed kind of censorship that removes students from the benefits of difficult, close reading and dumbs down the English classroom.
Words are taken out that set the entire mood of the piece; phrases that define the moment and add depth to the author’s style are taken out. Removing these aspects eliminates the experience of analyzing the author’s intent and figuring out why that phrase or scene was deemed necessary.”
SpyWriter Jack King, the author of:
Agents of Change, WikiJustice, The Black Vault, and The Fifth Internationale.
A new Pope. A new Church. A new world:
“Today, with the widespread of education and the booming of the print industry, we would expect more people getting into reading habits, but this did not happen.
…some people equate reading with studying and do not read in their leisure time.
…instead of passing stories along from one generation to another, children are left to television and internet for entertainment.”
How to change it? A good starting point is your home:
“When children are used to seeing books as part of their home furniture at an early age, it helps them get attached to reading.”
SpyWriter Jack King “A new King of thrillers on the horizon” http://www.SpyWriter.com
“Even with video games, computer tablets and other digital resources, the book still remains a powerful tool to tell stories, teach facts, and share experiences.
Reading is very important to character development, to understand how stories flow … I can’t say that our kids are reading less. The amount of time given them to read has changed. They don’t spend as much time in the school library. The teachers want the kids to read, but there is a limit on the time they can devote to that.
Children from lower income homes are not going to have a library inside their home … The school and public library are the only places for them to have the opportunity to experience written stories.
While video lays out a visual story for children, reading compels them to use their imagination to create the characters, setting and situations in the story.”
SpyWriter Jack King “A new King of thrillers on the horizon” http://www.SpyWriter.com