The Importance of Incorporating Reading as a Habit

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In a world dominated by rich media and multimedia interactive experiences, reading seems outmoded. However, reading is a unique dimension of human inquiry. Reading allows for ways of thinking that no other type of media can allow. Whether read on a Kindle or other eReader device or in print format, reading encourages the development of the imagination in both children and adults. In "A Defense of Reading," Marie Winn discusses the devastating effects that too much television has had on children's reading habits. Winn "defends" reading by showing how children need to create their own visual universe independent from what images the television feeds to their developing minds. Although Winn focuses on the impact of television on children's reading habits, the argument Winn uses can be applied equally to any other population including adults. Moreover, Winn's argument suggests that it is not just television that impedes reading. Too much interaction with any multimedia device like computers or video games has the potential to stifle the visual creativity and imagination that is fostered more by the act of reading. In "The Monster's Human Nature," Stephen Jay Gould does not address the pitfalls of watching too much television. The article uses Mary Shelley's novel Frankenstein to illustrate concepts related to the core elements of human nature. Using Frankenstein, the author does illustrate vividly how reading books engenders wisdom and insight into the human condition.

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