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June 11, 2013 · No Comments

…back in March writing for Time Magazine Maia Szalavitz reported that new research from the University of Leicester suggests no difference in the ability to recall something one as read on a e-book, and something one as read in a book.  Although the same study also suggested that “book readers seem to digest material more fully.” In the terminology of the study, they come to “know” what they’ve read.  Remembering what one has read is remembering what has shaped one–music comes to mind with happenstance but reading remembered is a deliberate stopping. ( Whose woods these are I think I know. His house is in the village though; He will not see me stopping here To watch his woods fill up with snow… ) Back in January I published this post on remembering something written:

A marvelous little vignette by Joe Fassler about two sentences that changed Walter Mosley’s life.  They come from Raymond Chandler’s novel The Long Goodbye and are, “He was looking at me and neither his eyes nor his gun moved. He was as calm as an adobe wall in the moonlight.” As a Chandler enthusiast they resonant with me to, but better still about the piece is that moment of clarity (revelation?) where a particular phrasing catches something perfectly for the reader-recipient.  It’s a moment in a reading life, when words shape one’s understanding of a personal relationship with how the world looks.  Ever reader has these moments, these phrases, and this reinforcement of why one reads…

My own favorite Chandler phrases, since I know you want to know, is from his 1939 story “Trouble is My Business:” I went first, then Hawkins, then Beef wheeled neatly behind us like a door. We went in so close together that we must have looked like a three-decker sandwich.

Categories: Books · Essay on Bibliography

St. Lawrence University