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The Dark Side of LiteracyLiterature and Learning Not to Read$
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Benjamin Bennett

Print publication date: 2008

Print ISBN-13: 9780823229161

Published to Fordham Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5422/fordham/9780823229161.001.0001

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. Boccaccio, Cervantes, and the Path to Solitary Reading

. Boccaccio, Cervantes, and the Path to Solitary Reading

(p.141) 4. Boccaccio, Cervantes, and the Path to Solitary Reading
The Dark Side of Literacy

Benjamin Bennett

Fordham University Press

The act or practice of reading has a totalitarian tendency to subject readers to passive receipt of information and to evoke in them sentiments strongly and undeniably reflective of any given author's. However, reading may also allow each reader to formulate his or her own opinions and act on them in real-world settings, for instance, by relating to persons who perhaps share a similar standpoint or perceive the text's meaning in a similar manner. In this chapter, the author argues that the sixteenth century fostered an era of solitary reading as the contingent individual and the modern reader are further defined and compared. The text thereby investigates the microscopic (individualistic nature) and macroscopic (intertextual nature) faces of reading and focuses on the influential premises of the renowned poets and scholars Giovanni Boccaccio and Miguel de Cervantes.

Keywords:   contingent individual, Boccaccio, Cervantes, solitary reading

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