quarta-feira, 23 de maio de 2012

Ler é uma necessidade humana / Humans have the need to read

Um estudo científico revela que a leitura é uma necessidade humana. Daí que os avanços tecnológicos ou a situação de crise não levem a que as pessoas ponham os livros de lado. Em papel ou em formato digital, ler continua a ser uma prioridade.

«Why should we bother reading a book? All children say this occasionally. Many of the 12 million adults in Britain with reading difficulties repeat it to themselves daily. But for the first time in the 500 years since Johannes Gutenberg democratised reading, many among our educated classes are also asking why, in a world of accelerating technology, increasing time poverty and diminishing attention spans, should they invest precious time sinking into a good book?

The beginnings of an answer lie in the same technology that has posed the question. Psychologists from Washington University used brain scans to see what happens inside our heads when we read stories. They found that "readers mentally simulate each new situation encountered in a narrative". The brain weaves these situations together with experiences from its own life to create a new mental synthesis. Reading a book leaves us with new neural pathways.

The discovery that our brains are physically changed by the experience of reading is something many of us will understand instinctively, as we think back to the way an extraordinary book had a transformative effect on the way we viewed the world. This transformation only takes place when we lose ourselves in a book, abandoning the emotional and mental chatter of the real world. That's why studies have found this kind of deep reading makes us more empathetic, or as Nicholas Carr puts it in his essay, The Dreams of Readers, "more alert to the inner lives of others".»

Leia o resto do artigo do jornal The Guardian AQUI.

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