Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming

What a powerful message! Even more relevant in the light of recent studies that show that a reader actually simulates in his brain all the activities he reads in the book.

Chris The Story Reading Ape's Blog

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14 thoughts on “Neil Gaiman: Why our future depends on libraries, reading and daydreaming

  1. Thanks SO much for this!!! A lot of what he says could be applied to music education (I feel a blog post coming on..) It’s not a long speech (spoken, it couldn’t be longer than 10 minutes), it’s a long article – for the internet anyway. Neil Gaiman wrote a book with his friend Terry Pratchett many years ago called “Good Omens” which is one of the best and funniest books I have ever read. Of course this is me at least 25 years ago talking. Maybe I would feel differently if I were to read it today. But I doubt it. I think I’ll go dig it out and see……….

    • No more earth-shattering than seismologists warning that there is going to be an eruption, and that it is a good idea to move away from the volcano, anyway. The reality is that people are starting to believe, and behave as if, books and reading have become irrelevant. Literacy levels, and the lowering of ability to absorb the information given in that speech – for example – in a tiny fraction of the time it took to give it, tend to illustrate this. The ‘skills’ acquired in replacement can hardly be regarded as a reasonable substitute.

    • Col is right. The general move is away from books and towards online games, “muds” and so on. The general move of Generation X (that’s us, parents & teachers) is to look onto the way the world is developing with such goggle-eyed wonder that we start questioning every last necessity. “Does he really need math?” – “What’s the point in having music education in schools?” – “Latin? What for?” – “History? the next load of politicians is just going to rewrite it again, so what’s the point?” and so on. And we forget the basics – that there were very good reasons for these “esoteric” and “optional” subjects. Our civilization was built on them.

  2. Well you could do a lot worse than starting out your career writing with Terry Pratchett!!! What a loss, by the way. To think of that mind going like that. He has left a gaping hole.

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