“Concepts pertaining to uniformity and to diversity - to the typical and to the unique - are interdependent. They represent two sides of the same coin. In this regard one might consider the emergence of a new sense of individualism as a by-product of the new forms of standardization. The more standardized the type, indeed, the more compelling the sense of an idiosyncratic personal self.” - (p. 128) Eisenstein, Writing Materials

Printing also furthered individualism because reading is a private affair, while speaking is obviously not. Even the book itself is private. You hold it in your hand. It is yours.


Wow, my indvividualism is the very book I read. I get it thoug, thats why some people read the oddest genres of book. Because that is a moment where they can be themselves.

Excellent point, Rachel. I believe I've read studies that suggest there is a connection between readers' personalities and the genres they prefer.

When I read your comment, Rachel, I automatically thought of Chris's personal essay about his relationship with books.

It's comforting to know the person who wrote the newest book you picked up that interested you probably shares some common personality traits with you. No matter how individual we are, somebody out there shares our most unique thoughts.

It is strange how books and people match up. Some of the smartest people in the world read science fiction and fantasy novels. Some may think that these genres are somewhat childish, but think hard; think of what kind of mind it had to take to create that literary world. The author has to be very intelligent also.

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This page contains a single entry by published on February 19, 2008 5:29 PM.

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