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Thomas Pavel quoted in the Chicago Tribune

The Chicago Tribune wonders whether, in the age of the internet, it’s still possible to concentrate on and enjoy the dense texts that make up our cultural heritage. “Too much surfing, scanning and tweeting has given me the attention span of a gnat on Red Bull. Today it’s all Google, no Gogol. … My addiction to the Internet’s gush of information means that, word for word, I read more than ever, but I understand less.”

But Thomas Pavel, the Gordon J. Laing Distinguished Service Professor in the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, has a different outlook. From the article:

In his view, long works of fiction proved their staying power when they survived the creation of film and television — challenges, [Pavel] said, that were far more radical than the still text-based Internet.

“You have to read [online],” he said. “You have to write. In a sense, every single activity which increases your language skills is not really competing with the novel.”

Good news—you needn’t feel guilty about regular visits to your favorite news page.

Posted in Making Headlines. Tagged with , .

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