Distracted Living, Writing

David Ulin on the lost art of reading

Back in 2009, David Ulin of “The Los Angeles Times” wrote a short essay, “The Lost Art of Reading.” The premise was simple: Our lives make it increasingly difficult to focus on reading. (And reading, in this context, doesn’t mean reading your Twitter feed.) Why is this? It’s because our lives are filled with noise, especially the “noise” of the Internet, and so it’s a lot harder to filter out that noise. As he writes: “Such a state is increasingly elusive in our over-networked culture, in which every rumor and mundanity is blogged and tweeted. Today, it seems it is not contemplation we seek but an odd sort of distraction masquerading as being in the know. Why? Because of the illusion that illumination is based on speed, that it is more important to react than to think, that we live in a culture in which something is attached to every bit of time.”

You can read his essay, and now you can read his book on the topic, “The Lost Art of Reading: Why Books Matter in a Distracted Time.”

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