Principles of Living

The Lost Art of Slow Reading

Why the Information Age is making us shallower.

Going paperless is simpler than ever. Like many of you, I go online to shop, make travel arrangements, manage bank accounts, pay utility bills and read the news. But when it comes to my bookshelves and file cabinets, it’s difficult for me to imagine a paperless environment.

Along two of the walls in my office, I have five rows of bookshelves sitting atop 30 file cabinet drawers. I haven’t read all the books on the shelves and I know there are files in those drawers I haven’t opened in years. But it’s a large collection of commentaries, encyclopedias, biographies, histories, periodicals, booklets, articles, clippings and notes I’ve accumulated over the past two decades.

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