Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Pleasure reading lets us escape our daily grind

PUBLICATION: The Ottawa Citizen
DATE: 2005.07.19
EDITION: Final
SECTION: News
PNAME: Letters
PAGE: A9
BYLINE: Emily Yaeger
SOURCE: The Ottawa Citizen

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Pleasure reading lets us escape our daily grind

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Re: Mild about Harry, July 16.

I wasn't shocked at the statistics about great numbers of people reading fiction.

Although statistics show that Canadians might not read essays, poetry or Shakespeare for entertainment, this doesn't reflect poorly on this country: It merely says that we spend way too much time on the necessities and way too little time reading pleasurable books like Harry Potter.

For many people, the only way to relax from our daily responsibilities of looking for jobs, doing chores and dealing with our personal issues is reading fantasy novels or other non-literary fiction, such as the classic mystery or romance novel.

If we were actually to ask ourselves why we read, I think the majority of society would come to the same conclusion -- we read what we enjoy. Since we are being forced to read Shakespeare in English class and about evolution in science textbooks, then what we choose to read in our recreational time will most likely be for entertainment.

Reading fantasy novels such as Harry Potter lets us lift ourselves out of our bodies -- metaphorically speaking -- leave our troubles behind and venture into a world of magic, Hogwarts and Quidditch, where getting a job to pay our way through university or more serious problems are temporarily forgotten.

Recreational reading shouldn't have to be seen as an escape, but in reality that is just what it is.

Emily Yaeger, 18,

Orleans

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