Difference Between Reading And Thought By Dwight Macdonald

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Dwight Macdonald has discussed the difference between reading and skimming a text in Reading and Thought. He uses examples such as functional curiosity relating to the growth of educated people to explain how the way we read affects our thinking. Macdonald explains that the more we read from the media, the more irrelevant information we gain. He uses the comparison of people reading in the sixteenth century and the nineteenth century and found that the average educated person back then took about two days to read and understand the material within a text. Nowadays, people skim through the text without understanding what they have read. These people who skim their text are known as the “well informed”. I agree with Macdonald’s position because …show more content…
Macdonald explains that when people take shortcuts in their reading due to the lack of time, they end up skimming their reading. I tried to finish a reading as fast as possible by looking at the reading questions first and then skimming the text. This way, I would just look for the answers in the text instead of reading the whole thing twice. We tend to read more nowadays because of how we read; when we skim a text, we have enough time to read more, leading to Dwight’s term of being “well informed”. I personally read a lot of articles, understanding only the gist of a situation, but I wouldn’t fully comprehend a certain topic. With this, the way I approach my reading of texts proves that reading has changed over time. In conclusion, I believe that Dwight’s view of how reading and thinking has changed over time is completely accurate. If a person is at a bookstore and had to choose between buying a magazine or a history book, the individual would most likely choose the magazine. It is easier to read and understand compared to the actual book. If you take account of a person’s curiosity, time and reading habits, it shows that reading and thinking has indeed changed over time. I hope that in the future, I will be able to have the time to read and analyze a text more

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