New Study—Books make us more human
Thursday, 10 October 2013 15:11
about all the reading you do ... and all the chores you DON'T do? Relax. It turns out you're a finer person for keeping your nose in a book. So keep reading.A new study
shows that books enable us live up to our better selves. The researchers, Emanuele Castano and David Comer Kidd, found that people gain empathy and social intelligence after reading certain kinds of books. What kind of books?
Well, not the blockbuster kind. So nix the heart-thomping thrillers or the steamy romances. The study refers specifically to "literary fiction"—well-developed characters and storylines that explore complicated human relationships—the very kind of books we read in book clubs.One of the books
used in the study was Round House
by Louise Erdrich, which (at the time of this writing) happens to be the 3rd most requested book on LitLovers. (See our Popular Books
page.)There's a reason
why books like Round House
matter. According to the New York Times
[L]iterary fiction leaves more to the imagination, encouraging readers to make inferences about characters and be sensitive to emotional nuance and complexity.
You can read
the full story in the NY Times HERE
. It's fascinating and well worth the time.
For Book Clubs
: Consider taking time during one of your meetings to talk about the books that have altered the way you perceive people and the world around you. Which books have enlarged your ideas about life and your role in it?