My Books. My Life.

"Let us read and let us dance – two amusements that will never do any harm to the world." ~Voltaire~

Books and the Good Life: Censorship and Conclusion April 14, 2008

Filed under: Uncategorized — Michelle @ 9:01 pm

This is the last in this series of post.  Thank you all for reading it and for all of the fantastic comments.  I'm glad I was able to share this with you (makes me feel like I did more than just write a paper for a class).

Books can be dangerous.  The best ones
should

be labeled "This could change your
life." 

~ Helen Exley ~

 

            The fact that people are so
insistent about banning books says a lot about the power of a few words on some
bound pages.  Censorship has existed for
many years as a way to keep out dangerous ideas.  Books have the ability to introduce people to
new ideas and the power to change how we act. 
Those in power often maintain that power by attempting to control what
those not in power know and read.  Why
don’t we want children learning about people who question authority?  Isn’t it ironic that we teach them about the
Revolutionary War but cringe to see them reading The Giver?  I am a strong
believer in the freedom of speech and ideas. 
I think that all of the ideas should be on the table so that we can be
informed when we choose how to live our lives and run our governments.  Books educate and persuade the uninformed or
undecided.  The power that books have is
amazing. 

To
me, this fact alone makes books a good thing and a necessity to living the good
life.  We do not have to reinvent the
wheel each time we do something.  Others
have laid a foundation for us in writing and we can use that foundation to
further develop thoughts and theories. 
Each generation can take it a little further.  Reading a book can be the thing that changes
our lives and inspires us to act in a new way. 
With each new book, we gain more knowledge and make smarter choices.

I
understand why people ban books.  Books
are powerful.  They are full of
information and persuasion.  Banned books
usually challenge the status quo.  This
is what makes them so important.  Not
every book has this level of knowledge and influence within its pages, but for
those that do, it is so important to make sure it survives.  Social changes begin with ideas and books are
the vessels that carry these ideas to others.

 

I'm looking in on the good life I might be doomed never to find.

~The Shins~

 

            That line comes from one of my
favorite songs, but it wasn’t until I started writing this paper that I really
thought much of it.  Books might simply
be part of the good life because they can achieve what we cannot.  We may not ever attain the good life.  We may not even have the ability to do
so.  But we can find a piece of it by
picking up a great book.  In the previous
pages, I have tried to explain why I love reading.  By doing this, I hope I have illustrated how
and why books are part of the good life. 
There may not be one reason or one theory that makes books part of a
good life, but maybe all of these little things together can show their
importance to our lives.  I wholeheartedly
believe that encouraging reading and cultivating a future full of readers is
necessary to the promotion of the good life.

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