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Ignorance in America? Say It Ain't So

The degree to which America is an aliterate, visual culture has always been appalling to me; far too many Americans seem proud to be idiots. A recent USA Today article examines the reading problem, and explains why Johnny struggles with reading. A sidebar dissects the Harry Potter fad's impact on reading nationwide.

As is traditional with these sorts of things, the prognosis offered ain't good. But the reporters bury an important point in the last few grafs: children read on the Internet for hours. Worse, they seem to miss the importance of this entirely. The article implies that this isn't "real reading" and that somehow only reading books counts. What hogwash; I'd argue that the Internet is the new frontier of written culture, and that we should pay more attention to what and how people read online. Casual reading (as people used to browse the daily newspaper rather than a daily web site) is important to being an informed citizen -- why disparage it? I just don't believe the claim that reading online doesn't develop critical reading skills.

Comments

( 1 sutra — Your wisdom )
mysticalforest
Nov. 19th, 2003 11:56 pm (UTC)
Internet is the new frontier of written culture

Well said.
( 1 sutra — Your wisdom )

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