Why Read?

By Ady Tang

Everyday of our lives has been filled with reading ever since one has started to learn the art of reading. Everywhere from bus stop advertisements to shopping flyers to street signs are composed of words and letters which force us to read for a single purpose: to convey an idea of significance worth noting in writing.

Literature is also written for the purpose of conveying an idea of importance. However, in addition, literature portrays an innovative and cultural opinion and shares it with a designated audience. This genre of reading is introduced academically in the early years of elementary school and continued throughout high school and carried over to post-secondary institutions.

There is a great difference between the reading styles of reading for pleasure versus reading for academic purposes. It is with great reason that literature is studied in school and other academic settings as it is not easily “digestible” by all readers as it involves a certain degree of difficulty of interpreting the meaning the author is trying to express. As a result, it is widely discussed to get each reader’s thoughts and try to understand the author’s portrayal. As many students and teachers read their assigned reading, common actions such as highlighting, underlining, bookmarking and folding page corners often result as a successful and in-depth reading to prepare for discussion next class and lead to a worn and colorful book.

On the other hand, many pieces of literature are read for sheer pleasure and interest in the subject and offer great inspiration to numerous readers. The reader could read at his or her own pace and for many readers, they cannot put down the book until it is finished and still be left with the feeling of wanting more. By the end of the reading, the reader is intrigued and inspired by the work that author has published. In comparison, the same piece of literature could be unpleasing to others as the reader may not understand the concept the author is trying to portray. Literature, just like any other types of art, is highly interpretational and could lead to mixed emotions about the piece of writing.

Reading is a significant way to learn new ideas and opinions whether it be in a casual or academic setting as it is rewarding and inspirational as each reader takes away their interpretation of the message the author tries to deliver.

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