Saturday, February 6, 2010

"We are how we read..."

You know... It's so funny how on my last blog I asked you - Prof. Nichols and my classmates - what you thought about my blogs. I was worried that they were getting way too long and uninteresting. Interestingly enough, I only had one reply. It sort of confirmed my theory that in fact people are unwilling to put enough time to reading. I must say that I am unfortunately a victim of this too. Not because I don't like to read, but it takes me longer to read and absorb than most people and I just don't think there are enough hours in the day to accommodate my crazy busy schedule.

I have known for a long time now that I am a visual person. It's not that I prefer visual learning above kinetic or language-oriented learning (by the way you may learn more about the different types of learning here), it is that no matter what medium I use, my mind tends to convert it into visual images in my brain.

When I read a book or an article, I visualize the words and the actions. When I listen to a song or a lecture, I again visualize the person speaking and also the actions within that song or lecture.

This is why I can empathize with Maryanne Wolf's quote in "Is Google Making Us Stupid?" She said, "We are not only what we read, we are how we read." I am a slow reader and always have been. Growing up, sometimes this was seen as a negative but once I understood why I read slower than most people, I came to appreciate it and accommodate my ability.

Certainly, it is not the most convenient thing to be so visual. Even when I speak or even now when I am typing this blog, pictures flash thorough my mind; remembering my elementary school years and how much longer it would take me to read or complete tests. So, I don't think that the concerns that both in Nicholas Carr and Kevin Kelly voice in their articles quite apply to me. The reason is I have a little bit of OCD - Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. This can be a definite disadvantage but sometimes, especially with regards to Carr and Kelly's concerns, it can be an advantage.

I can never find myself to "skim" through an article or a book. My obsessive behavior doesn't quite allow me to do that. When I watch a movie, I want total silence and usually I will turn on the closed captions to double make sure that I don't miss anything. I will never watch a movie even if I missed the first 45 seconds of it. I cannot seem to shut up or consolidate much, if you know what I mean.... Even right now, I want to write and write more but I know to keep it as short as possible so that my classmates don't get bored and enjoy my blogs.

Nietzsche may have changed the way he communicated due to his type-writer, but I think our ever-changing technology and world is quite not the catalyst in the formula to change me. But, having read Kelly and Carr's article, I am now aware to be more accommodating to my audience. I need to immerse myself in today's media culture and "keep up with the times," if you will and make all my readers (all nine of you) happy!

P.S. Pleaseeeeeeee drop me a line and tell me what you think!


  1. I am sorry that I haven't commented, school has been getting to me and I have been getting behind with reading other people's posts. But I have been interested in your blog from the start of the class because I thought it was interesting how you said that you don't like to do things on the computer. I will say that last week's post was a bit long, but looking over it seems like you are getting the hang of using different media in the blog posts and from what I have read of the posts It seems like you are enjoying posting more and I understand wanting to keep writing (as on my other blog I have done some very lengthy posts before) but I think that is good and that while I guess it is good to be aware that if a post is too long no one is going to read it, you shouldn't stifle yourself when there is something that you really want/need to say.

  2. I'm jealous of how deeply you take in what you read and see. I love to read and have constantly been reading since I was little. But, I can't tell you the names of probably 90% of what I read, or even how the book ended. It makes me feel guilty that I enjoy a book and the story the author was telling, but I can't retain it. It seems as if I don't appreciate what I read, when in fact I do, soooo much!
    I think it's really great that you've come to appreciate how deeply you absorb things. It's a great trait to have!

  3. Your comments raise an interesting question for me. You are a visual "reader.thinker.hearer" - you visualize as you read. Although I agree with your respondents that your blog writing is very engaging - I wonder, why not more "visuality" in your composition? (We'll talk about this in upcoming sessions, but you've hit on an important issue for all of us as we enter an age of digital composition.)