How to talk about books you have not readGuest post by Justine Thomas (Share you tips with 40,000+ Malaysian students)
A cultural event, an environment of intellectuals, it comes to the book the content of which every respectable person has to superficially know at least. What to do if you are not familiar with this piece? How not to disgrace yourself and keep the conversation going with dignity? You’ll find out the answers in this article.
The cult of impeccable education
It is not necessary to open a book to express authoritative opinion about it, although experts may not like it.
Informal rule of intellectuals says: it is unacceptable to not read the book, but even more unacceptable, even indecent, to read "along the diagonal" or only superficially flip pages and admit it.
Thus for a teacher-humanist it is absolutely impossible to confess that he read Proust novel only in some places, but not from beginning to end. Yet the majority of people did so.
Sometimes non-reading can be useful. In addition, a conversation about the book you didn’t read can be extremely enthralling, even with a person who also did not read it.
Discussions about any book are a space for creativity
The virtual space of discussion about books is distinguished by high uncertainty that affects both participants, who cannot exactly say what they have read or not read, and a changing subject of the discussion itself.
The expressions about books are like interpretation in psychoanalysis: it entirely depends on the time that occurs, and it filled with meaning only during this period. In other words in a conversation about the book the book itself plays not as important role as direct moment of exchanging of ideas and experiences.
Using everything you know (name, text, an exact or invented quote), you can dive into the world of senses and virtual content lines, limitless space of creativity.
Some tips in case of a conversation about an unread book
1. Don’t be shy.
"In addition to money and intimate relationship, there are few areas of life, which is so hard to hear the truth about, as unread books."
It is always unclear which books your interlocutor has read. He may know the book not better than you do, therefore he feels just as insecure as you.
2. Convince other people in your own ideas.
It is easy to convince others of the correctness of your opinion because the book is not a frozen object. If you tie it with string and mark an ink line, this still won’t stop its movement.
No text has the only correct interpretation. In this case, the relevance of your thought depends on your oratorical abilities.
3. Think up books.
Getting into a critical space, the book changes, turns on the relationship between the text and people. At any time you should be ready to formulate your views on this new moving object.
If your statement was rightly denied, there is nothing wrong to accept the fact that you made a mistake. Even the most serious book readers gradually forget the books they are familiar with.
4. Talk about yourself
I don’t read books, which I have to review, because in this case I get under their influence.
The paradox of reading is that the way to you runs through the book. To pass it, do not linger.
Justine Thomas is a blogger and a freelance writer. Her main interests are foreign languages, psychology and fitness. Currently Justine is working at education project Edubirdie.com as a consulting editor.
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