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Advantages Of Slow Reading

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Thinker13
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Posted 05/21/12 - 9:14 AM:
Subject: Advantages Of Slow Reading
You might have heard about people reading hundreds of books per year. "Be wary of fast readers," said Gore Vidal once, himself a voracious reader and scholar, he was aware of pitfalls of too fast too much. 'Photoreading' is a process where you could increase your reading speed as much as 100 times! Paul Scheele is a pioneer in field of accelerated learning and Photoreading and he is an ardent advocate of speed reading. Skeptics look at speed reading as suitable only for 'just a few' applications, if any.


I don't belong to the category of those skeptics but I have never acquired mastery in photoreading because I never wanted to flood myself with information. Photoreading might be a great meta-technique for many applications, but I recommend slow reading for the purpose of augmenting one's knowledge. Slow reading helps you look at words and if you find etymologies, word-families, derivatives and phrases exceedingly engrossing, you must cultivate the habit of reading slowly. Slow reading could act as a potential meditation tool.


In his brilliant article, Patrick Kingsley talks about slow reading in detail. A brief excerpt:


Article wrote:

"Slow reading," writes Miedema, "is a community event restoring connections between ideas and people. The continuity of relationships through reading is experienced when we borrow books from friends; when we read long stories to our kids until they fall asleep." Meanwhile, though the movement began in academia, Tracy Seeley, an English professor at the University of San Francisco, and the author of a blog about slow reading, feels strongly that slow reading shouldn't "just be the province of the intellectuals. Careful and slow reading, and deep attention, is a challenge for all of us."
So the movement's not a particularly cohesive one – as Malcolm Jones wrote in a recent Newsweek article, "there's no letterhead, no board of directors, and, horrors, no central website" – and nor is it a new idea: as early as 1623, the first edition of Shakespeare's folio encouraged us to read the playwright "again and again"; in 1887, Friedrich Nietzsche described himself as a "teacher of slow reading"; and, back in the 20s and 30s, dons such as IA Richards popularised close textual analysis within academic circles.


The slow reading helps when you are doing it to learn something along with high concentration on the medium in which this learning has been presented. If you intend to study the style, punctuation, verbiage, flow and quintessence of the message you're reading, you ought to read it meticulously and slowly. It's not about comprehension, it's about absorption, analysis, comparison and meditation. This type of reading is not well-suited for most of the message types most of the times. But there is certain area of messages which must be read as slowly as possible and if you could just scribble for a while, after reading every two pages or so, it would become a marvellous practice to glean knowledge and to use it with Socratic Method of Freenoting. Freenoting was developed by Win Wenger. In Freenoting, you just keep on scribbling whatever comes to your mind, with as much of speed as possible, no matter whether it seems relevant or important or not.
thedoc
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Posted 05/21/12 - 10:59 PM:

I had thought of somethink along these lines in regard to plays. With a play and a live production if you miss a line or don't quite understand it you can't ask the players to go back and repeat it. If you are reading the play you can easily go back over whole sections to get it right.

If you are reading a novel you usually just need to get on to find out what happens, or who-dun-it. If, on the other hand, it is a work of non-fiction, where the data is what is important, reading and pondering each part is better done slowly.

'Alice in Wonderland', even though fiction, should be read slowly.
Thinker13
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Posted 05/22/12 - 1:22 AM:

thedoc wrote:
I had thought of somethink along these lines in regard to plays. With a play and a live production if you miss a line or don't quite understand it you can't ask the players to go back and repeat it. If you are reading the play you can easily go back over whole sections to get it right.

If you are reading a novel you usually just need to get on to find out what happens, or who-dun-it. If, on the other hand, it is a work of non-fiction, where the data is what is important, reading and pondering each part is better done slowly.


Very pertinent observations thedoc.

thedoc wrote:

'Alice in Wonderland', even though fiction, should be read slowly.


True.
thedoc
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Posted 05/22/12 - 10:30 AM:

And the best way to read Alice is a copy of 'The Philosophers Alice' by Peter Heath 1974. I is an oversized book with the Lewis Carroll text on one side of the page and commentary and explination on the other. My copy was well read, but I need to replace it.

Even though it is seen as a childrens book, it is really a satire and social commentary.

Edited by thedoc on 05/22/12 - 10:39 AM
Drakelings
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Posted 05/22/12 - 11:27 AM:

now i dont feel so bad about reading slow! haha
thedoc
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Posted 05/22/12 - 1:34 PM:

Hello Drakelings, welcome to the couch, get comfortable and don't worry about any loose change that falls out of your pockets, I'll clean that up later.
Just to be curious, what are you reading slowly right now? I'm still mulling over 'Thou art That' by Joseph Campbell.
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