Gift idea:  Christianity Today’s 2017 book awards

Christianity Today has announced its 2017 book awards.  The list of winners in all of the different categories might give you some good ideas for Christmas presents.

I like book editor Matt Reynolds’ introduction to the list.   He surveys how, thanks to the new printing press, Luther’s Reformation in 1517 was tied to the reading of books.  Reading popularized the Reformation, and the Reformation popularized reading.
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Americans are still reading books

The death of the book has been greatly exaggerated.

A Pew study has found that Americans are reading books in large numbers.  Nearly three-fourths of Americans have read at least one book in the past year.  The average number of books read in that period is 12.

E-books are growing in popularity, but they still lag behind print books.  28% of the public have read an e-book over the last year, but only 6% read e-books exclusively. [Read more…]

Why reading is good for you

Reading a lot, for pleasure, is associated with all kinds of physical and psychological benefits.  Details after the jump. [Read more…]

The Common Core in action

The Common Core requires that at least half of what elementary and middle school students read be non-fiction.  By 12th grade, that goes up to 70%.  And the non-fiction being read is not that of the great minds of our heritage but online posts, government documents, and United Nations proclamations.

The New York Times has an article on what the Common Core is doing to English classes.  Notice how educators are taking the opportunity to politically indoctrinate their pupils.  Notice how the approach forces what classic literature that is still read into a contemporary grid.  Notice how the whole enterprise is not raising standards, as the Core claims to do, but is rather dumbing down the curriculum. [Read more…]

Bibliotherapy

Did you know that there is such a thing as bibliotherapy, in which counselors will prescribe a course of books to read as a way of working through emotional or mental problems? [Read more…]

The digital generation prefers print on paper

I really enjoy my Kindle.  But when it comes to reading scholarly works, I need to flip back and forth, mark pages, study illustrations, and generally read more carefully.  I kind of need hard-copy printed books to do that.

Now it turns out that the Millennial generation, computer-literate and screen-oriented as they are, are the same way, maybe more so!  Their preference for reading old-fashioned books is overwhelming.

See why, with details about the mental difference between reading on paper and reading on a screen after the jump. [Read more…]