Reading in the 21st Century

While reading Carr, I was impressed with his summary of where printing and reading came from and where it is today. The progression from simple tablet sketches to the printing press to the internet it was interesting to actually consider just how different reading has become. And along with reading; our thinking as humans has changed.

Carr wrote that the first ‘readers’ experienced a change in their cognitive tendencies;  “They thought deeply as they read deeply”. I found this to be an insightful thought into the progression of reading and thinking. As people were charged (not punitively, of course) with reading more elegant texts, so to were they forced to think more deeply.

I was interested to extrapolate Carr’s ideas further. What will happen in the future? Given that everything is now on screens, how is that going to change us as readers and humans?

This article explores many of these same issues: http://www.smithsonianmag.com/40th-anniversary/reading-in-a-whole-new-way-1144822/

The article touches on the ideas of the physical engagement of screens and how they engage not only our minds, but our bodies as well (fingers, mostly). They also referenced Minority Report, the movie starring Tom Cruise set in the future. The movie showed futuristic screens which envelope the entire body, not just words in a book or even a tablet. The words and images and information seemingly surrounds the individual and can even be shared by multiple people at once. This version of reading in the future, should it come to fruition, is an amazing testament to the natural progression of reading as it was in the past to the present.

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By rohpatel

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