The difficult thing however about predicting the future of reading is that everything i’ve said so far presumes that what is being read is an “n-page” article or essay or an “n-page,” “n-chapter” book,” when realistically, the forms of expression will change dramatically as we learn to exploit the unique affordances of new electronic media. Ideally, the boundaries between reading and writing will become ever more porous as readers take a more active role in the production of knowledge and ideas.
Although we date the “age of print” from 1454, more than two hundred years passed before the “novel” emerged as a recognizable form. Newspapers and magazines took even longer to arrive on the scene. Just as Gutenberg and his fellow printers started by reproducing illustrated manuscripts, contemporary publishers have been moving their printed texts to electronic screens. This shift will bring valuable benefits (searchable text, personal portable libraries, access via internet download, etc.), but this phase in the history of publishing will be transitional. Over time new media technologies will give rise to new forms of expression yet to be invented that will come to dominate the media landscape in decades and centuries to come.
I made this graphic because some people like to complain that changing the gender/sex of the characters somehow “ruins” or “desecrates” Arthur Conan Doyle’s legacy. Funnily enough nobody ever complains when they are turned into mice, dogs, etc. (Presumably because they are still male.) As you can see there have been several female versions of these characters in the past, and they have hardly ruined anything.
Some of the oldest adaptations only had the actor info for Holmes on IMDB, so either Watson didn’t exist in those films at all, or the actor is unknown. (If he did exist it’s pretty safe to assume he was male.)
I excluded incarnations where Holmes/Watson only appeared once as guest stars in unrelated tv shows. (There were lots.)
This is awesome.
It’s more than cosplay. When immersed in a fictional world, your mind can let go of its self-identity, and unconsciously connect with a fictional character’s behaviors and thoughts.
A phenomenon called “experience-taking” is thought to be at the heart of this behavior. It’s not the same as just sharing a character’s perspective. The readers actually transformed their world view to match the characters if presented in the right way. I think the most interesting part of this work is when they repeated the test with movies. The effect didn’t hold up. It seems like sitting in a theater doesn’t stimulate the unconscious changes that immersing yourself in a written character does.
Ever happened to you?
A reader lives a thousand lives…
Reblog if you don’t care how people read, as long as they’re reading
The inconsistency of genius is a consistent theme of creativity: Even those blessed with ridiculous talent still produce works of startling mediocrity. (The Beatles are the exception that proves the rule, although their subsequent solo careers prove that even Lennon and McCartney were fallible artists.) The larger point is that mere imagination is not enough, for even those with prodigious gifts must still be able to sort their best from their worst, sifting through the clutter to find what’s actually worthwhile.