Book Reading: A Flux in Digital and Information Age

This is FREE sample
This text is free, available online and used for guidance and inspiration. Need a 100% unique paper? Order a custom essay.
  • Any subject
  • Within the deadline
  • Without paying in advance
Get custom essay

Knowledge, the best blessing of Almighty Allah and a source of supremacy for Adam over angels. The very first revelation heralded the value of knowledge and ordered to “Read”. Prophets introduced words of God in the form of book thus introducing book reading as a religious ritual and a revealed habit. “Some books are to be tasted, others to be swallowed, and some few to be chewed and digested” is rightly demarcated by Beacon. Reading provides taste, pleasure and sagacity. Advent of “Information Age” has revolutionised every aspect of our lives including habit of book reading. Gadgetry’s overwhelming influence radicalized the concept of knowledge and from knowing little but sound changed into Google knowledge of know all of least value and soundness. A bifurcated approach for and against of value of old age book reading brings us to the brim of analysis of book reading habit / trends in digital paradigm and information age to recommend viable modus operandi to ride the tide of technological revolution.


A written text that can be published in print or electronic format. In this article book will be taken in both printed (hard copy / paper form) and electronic form (in digital formats etc).

Books through Ages

Just like evolution of human society, books evolved through different stages and changed many shapes / forms. Few important shapes / forms are mentioned below:

  • Stone Age : Cave walls, Rocks, Clay and Stones.
  • Agricultural and Industrial Age : Animal Skin, Tree oak, Leaves and Print Format on paper.
  • Information Age : Digital Format (screen reading).

Book Reading

“Reading” for the current study means reading with eye contact to fulfill information need for any purpose either on print (from paper) or on screen (from laptop, cell phone or any other such gadgetry). Book reading is not a natural or inherited process; there are no reading genes (Wolf, 2007). Reading is a developed habit and deliberate intellectual effort.

Importance of Book Reading

  • Role in Individual Growth

It plays significant role in personality development of an individual. Book reading is a tool of mental growth and will result in development of an inquisitive and acquisitive mind which will lead to “Critical Thinking”. One gains knowledge, experience and obtains ideas which cannot be transmitted verbally. A good reader will be a good leader with well-developed cognitive abilities and will perform better in academic / practical life. It strengthens power of imagination and is best defence against clogged, prejudiced or a “Black and White Thinking (good vs bad only)”.

  • Role in Social and Economic Progress

Education is directly linked with the moral, social and civic uplift of any society.No nation in modern era has achieved any significant status till the time its society became educated. Survival of current democratic systems is dependent upon availability of academically sound and well-read breed of population. Book reading is a bulwark against psychological manipulation and subconscious persuasion. Reading is a potent tool of national integration since it mitigates ignorance thus reducing sense of deprivation.

Negative Effects of Reading

Reading is prone to negative effects as well. The present digital marvel not only revolutionized the reading level but also a gush of unauthenticated material without any mean/ trend of gauging its origin. If reading is uncritical then it can lead to psychological manipulation and can generate negative opinions and stimulus. Unethical and violent reading can result in serious immoral and illegal actions. Reading must not be used as “Means of Escape (like a drug)”.

Factors Effecting Book Reading

Role of Parents and Teachers

Reading habits are nurtured from home and role of parents and domestic environment plays pivotal role in developing lifelong habit of book reading. Parents have played key role in reading in developed societies . Negative influence of parents due to inability to provide appropriate material, lack of light and space, number of house hold tasks and child labor practices can severely effect reading habits of child . Situation in Pakistan is not that much encouraging. Due to poor back ground, lack of awareness (about their role in developing reading habits of child) and weak management, children display diverse reading habits.

Cultural and Social Causes

Reading habit is a cultural phenomenon. So called reading societies have book reading as part of their daily routine and supported by their life style. In France curriculum hours are set aside for book reading. Well stocked central libraries are essential for schools in USA and UK. In Japan minimum 30 to 60 minutes per day is spent by pupils for general reading. In Kazakhstan, pocket book accompanies children everywhere i.e home, school, clubs, parks, pools and in huts near fields where their parents work. Parents buy cheap books from grocery stores as part of routine purchases. If book reading is not supported culturally then new readers get discouraged. In Pakistan, there are many social aspects contributing to the decline in reading habits of students most important one is lack of importance given to book reading.

Opportunity for Reading

This factor plays pivotal role in development of reading habit. Even most motivated readers can be discouraged if books as per their taste are not available or easily accessible. Biggest and cost effective source for books is library. Cost of books and availability in book stores also play an important part. Besides availability of books, availability of place and time to read is also an important determinants of opportunity to read. It is here that “Library” comes into play and provides these opportunities.

Purpose of Reading

Another important factor is ‘purpose of reading’ which can be increase in knowledge, academic requirement, self-interest and pleasure.

Impact of Mass Media

Mass Media is considered as “Time Eating Machine”. It consumes major chunk of time which was previously used for reading. Both developing and developed world are victim . Since it is difficult to stop this trend it will be better that mass media may be used as a compliment to reading rather than as rival. Selective and controlled exposure to mass media, can be as stimulus for initial impressions and books to be used as follow up, to deepen up the understanding in same direction.

Impact of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs)

These include laptops, desktops, cell phones, tablets and E-book readers etc. Books are available on these devices in multiple formats. Reading from these devices is also called “Screen Reading”.

Advantages of Screen / E-Reading

Its’ growing popularity is due to certain very powerful advantages that it offers:

  • Cheap and Cost Effective and more material available. Its easily available material through multiple free e-sources with abundance makes it a charm for every reading lover.
  • Interactivity including selective and Non-linear reading. It’s handier in handling as the provision of using and underlining the important and required material for quote and reference.
  • Convenient, 24/7 access to digital material at all times and at all places. It’s very easy to move along with personal library which otherwise was quite cumbersome and difficult even in case of selected favourites.
  • Convergence of text, images, audio and video etc. E-sources are an easy access to all types of information clustered at one point and very handy in use. It bring more clarity and comprehension to knowledge and concepts supported with audio and visual aids,
  • Preference for small amount of texts and shorter photographs. Different font setting along with its being helpful in visual use for all type of readers is very much user friendly.
  • Time saving due to quick search, availability and navigation. The cumbersome aspect of searching relevant material in already read book for any reference is quite handy and very much soothing.
  • Several users can simultaneously use a single document. Once a source is acquired it can be used by multiple desirers and without any further cost effect.
  • Availability of inbuilt dictionary and lookup functions. It provides an easy access to meanings without opening another book for the better comprehension.
  • User friendly search engines make it easy to search and access required information.
  • Online documents also allow more opportunities for accessing further information due to presence of hyperlinks.

Disadvantages of Screen / E-Reading

It has certain disadvantages as well:

  • Difficulty to continue sustained engagement and deep reading due to short attention spans in reading because of distractions (pop up messages etc.) .
  • Lack of Critical Thinking (it develops superficial reading). An easy access to relevant material and easy search engine brings lethargic attitude along with scanning without imbibing the true crux or quintessence of knowledge.
  • Reading speed up to 30 % slower.

Cite this paper

Book Reading: A Flux in Digital and Information Age. (2021, Aug 30). Retrieved from https://samploon.com/book-reading-a-flux-in-digital-and-information-age/

We use cookies to give you the best experience possible. By continuing we’ll assume you’re on board with our cookie policy

Peter is on the line!

Don't settle for a cookie-cutter essay. Receive a tailored piece that meets your specific needs and requirements.

Check it out