On the Joys of Difficult Reading

bookWhy should reading be difficult, if not confrontational?

Because reading a book like Ulysses by James Joyce is an accomplishment and a unique experience. It’s not easy and isn’t meant to be. Another example might be Umberto Eco’s The Name of the Rose.

That being said, these example books aren’t for everybody, and not everyone has the desire or wants to climb Mount Everest either. What of literature? When we can get a steady stream of watered-down words, why read it at all? I remember sitting in my English class at university and other students looking for shortcuts and explanations, not enjoying the challenge of chewing on words and trying to figure it out by actually reading the assigned books.

Students (and universities) have changed a lot since then.

When the logic of capitalism means universities are run as businesses, much is lost.

Reclaiming literature is crucial to understanding the times we live in.

 

‘The difficulty is the point’: teaching spoon-fed students how to really read

by Tegan Bennett Daylight

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On the Dark, Wondrous Optimism of Ray Bradbury

Image result for ray bradbury“Bradbury, who never used a computer or drove a car (and believed automobiles more dangerous than war), could be described by a little-known word in English derived from Portuguese, nefelibata: one who walks in the clouds. For better or for worse, we don’t as yet live in the future he imagined, and his predictions and screeds can feel quaint, if not ingenuous or tone-deaf, today. Yet at its best, his work is so imaginative that I feel able to drift off, up, for a bit, and dream.”

Image result for fahrenheit 451 Image result for ray bradbury

 

 

 

 

 

 

On the Dark, Wondrous Optimism of Ray Bradbury, By Gabrielle Bellot

 

Morton on Humanity: The Anthropocene

A dried-up reservoir bed in South Korea.It’s a long read on The Guardian, but definitely worth it.

Timothy Morton wants humanity to give up some of its core beliefs, from the fantasy that we can control the planet to the notion that we are ‘above’ other beings. His ideas might sound weird, but they’re catching on.

‘A reckoning for our species’: the philosopher prophet of the Anthropocene

 

 

Europe in crisis? Despite everything, its citizens have never had it so good – Natalie Nougayrède

europa

The EU’s achievements are huge. As Brexit begins, don’t forget that hundreds of millions still want to be part of it.

Europe in crisis? Despite everything, its citizens have never had it so good – Natalie Nougayrède