Thursday, August 30, 2007

The State of The Book in The US

I came across this article on CNN. When I first read it, I thought, not too surpising. But thought wonder illiteracy (and just plain disinterest) is so high in this country when we got Britney Spears, Branjelina, reality T.V. shows (have you ever seen Beauty and the Geek? Jesus!) spreading like bacteria in the brain.

One in four adults say they read no books at all in the past year, according to an Associated Press-Ipsos poll released Tuesday. Of those who did read, women and seniors were most avid, and religious works and popular fiction were the top choices.

The survey reveals a nation whose book readers, on the whole, can hardly be called ravenous. The typical person claimed to have read four books in the last year -- half read more and half read fewer. Excluding those who hadn't read any, the usual number read was seven.

"I just get sleepy when I read," said Richard Bustos of Dallas, Texas, a habit with which millions of Americans can doubtless identify. Bustos, a 34-year-old project manager for a telecommunications company, said he had not read any books in the last year and would rather spend time in his backyard pool.

Hey, I know fiction has been on the downside for a bit, in a bit of a slump, but reading only four books in a year? That seems incomprehensible to me.

"Fiction just doesn't interest me," said Bob Ryan, 41, who works for a construction company in Guntersville, Alabama. "If I'm going to get a story, I'll get a movie."


  1. It's a little bit painful to read, isn't it?

  2. Wow, scary! I belong to a book club and we read a new book every month. Thankfully, my kids are around alot of books and always seem to have one in hand!

  3. Whirlwind-I know, isn't it? I cannot go through the day-or at least the week!-without reading something, even if my child is under 5 years! Even if it is just a magazine or the newspaper or some bit on a blog.

    Got to keep my mind active.

  4. Melissa-yes, I suppose for some people it is quite painful to read....