Posts Tagged: reading habits

Reading Mslle feature

Reading Mademoiselle Gantrel

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We squinted into the smoky room and saw ourselves on junior year abroad, frolicking on the Left Bank with artists in berets like hers. ...more

Omar Musa

The Read Along #2: Omar Musa

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In the second installment of The Read Along, Omar Musa shares how airplane delays can lead to productive reading sessions and how easy it is to get sucked into Internet wormholes about geodesic domes. ...more

Slow Reading

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As much as many of us would love to read faster so that we could read more books, science points to speed reading as little more than efficient skimming, partially because the eye has a limited range where it can truly focus:

A deeper problem, however—and the one that also threatens the new speed-reading apps—is that the big bottleneck in reading isn’t perception (seeing the words) but language processing (assembling strings of words into meanings).

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No More Book Shaming

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It’s no secret that libraries have had a rocky relationship with publishers since the ebook boom began in the late aughts. Publisher’s Weekly suggests three ways the two could work to heal the rift, but one of the suggestions is surprising: librarians need to stop “book shaming”:

What today’s library elite seems to forget is that reading is a maker activity—and a profound one.

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Brain Training

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Great news for avid readers! It turns out that intense reading is good exercise for your brain. Over at Open Culture, Josh Jones writes about a study by Michigan State University Professor Natalie Phillips, who compares the brain activity of participants alternating between a close read and a casual perusal of a chapter in Jane Austen’s Mansfield Park:

Thus, she theorizes, the practice and teaching of close reading “could serve—quite literally—as a kind of cognitive training, teaching us to modulate our concentration and use new brain regions as we move flexibly between modes of focus.”

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Word of the Day: Oblivescence

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(n.); the process of forgetting;

“Curiously enough, one cannot read a book: one can only reread it. When we read a book for the first time, the very process of laboriously moving our eyes from left to right, line after line, page after page, this complicated physical work upon the book, the very process of learning in terms of space and time what the book is about, this stands between us and artistic appreciation.”

–Vladmir Nabokov, from “Good Readers and Good Writers”

This week, Tim Parks takes us on a wonderfully meditative reflection on something we tend, as readers, to take for granted: the physical act of moving one’s eyes across the page, of engaging with words, and—unavoidably—forgetting them.

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Writers Must Read

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Writers sometimes forget the importance of reading. Just about everyone who writes started out as a voracious reader, but working on the craft of writing ends up displacing time previously spent reading. Over at Dead Darlings, Kelly Robertson takes a look at the importance of continuing to read:

It is only by reading a lot can we really interpret what we learned in all of our classes.

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Lost in Translation

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Three Percent, a resource for international literature at the University of Rochester, derives its name from the fact that about 3 percent of all the books published in the U.S. every year are translations. But the bulk of these are technical writings or reprints of literary classics; only 0.7 percent are first-time translations of fiction and poetry.

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Peter Mendelsund (color) (c) George Baier IV

The Rumpus Interview with Peter Mendelsund

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Writer, designer, and thinker Peter Mendelsund talks about book design, the tangled process of reading and perception, and his two new books, Cover and What We See When We Read. ...more

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The Last Book I Loved: The Ocean at the End of the Lane

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I couldn’t wait to read it, but I was also infinitely patient. It’s that delayed gratification thing. I’m a sucker for it, and there are books that are worth the wait. ...more

Women Read Women

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Women read books written by women and men read books written by men, reports the Guardian. A study of Goodreads data suggests that people prefer reading books written by those who share their gender. The study also reveals that men and women read roughly the same number of books; however, women read twice as many books published in 2014 as men did.

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Young Adults Still Go to the Library

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The Pew Research Center recently released a report about younger Americans’s (ages 16-29) attitudes toward libraries. As it turns out, young adults still read books, they still visit libraries—at least as much as older Americans—and many use library services. There are some key differences between younger and older generations when it comes to libraries—younger patrons, for example, are less likely to say a library closure would significantly impact them—but the findings still suggest libraries play important roles in communities.

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Read Slowly, Read Better

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Reading is healthy, but not all reading is created equally. Advocates of slow reading suggest that dedicated periods of thirty to forty-five minutes away from other distractions can lower stress and maximize reading benefits. And reading online content just isn’t as beneficial as reading in distraction-free environments:

One 2006 study of the eye movements of 232 people looking at Web pages found they read in an “F” pattern, scanning all the way across the top line of text but only halfway across the next few lines, eventually sliding their eyes down the left side of the page in a vertical movement toward the bottom.

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