Critical Essay about Article

Critical Essay about Article
The article under consideration by David Brooks entitled “The Medium is the Medium” is published in OP-ED Columnist. The article deals with a long-term the Internet-versus-books debate that reveals the delusion that the medium is the message. Truly, analyzing the supporters and critics of the viewpoint Brooks accentuates the advantages books bring and the disadvantages the Internet has.

From the very beginning of the article the author provides readers with the data of the thorough studies he overviewed and proves the importance of in the test scores of students, as those who took books home in summer did not experience such a serious “summer slide”. the researchers noticed that even a dozen books taken home have affect students performance positively. While according to Nicholas Carr’s “The Shallows” the Internet results in the development of short-attention-span culture. He notices the degradation of abilities and loss of ability to seriously contemplate. While the critics of his theory claim that playing computer games and using Internet searchers improves information processing ability and is rather a boon to students than a threat (Brooks). An amusing observation is made by a researcher who says that building one’s own library makes students feel readers and members of the reading community, at times even full citizens of the literary world.

Brooks goes on substantiating the idea that the medium is just the medium and much depends on the way it is used, on the choice of literature that may range from classics to pulp novels in particular. The author believes that the writers transfer lasting wisdom, therefore should be respected for that and any reader who takes a book in his or her hands penetrates into that marvelous world of literature due to them and via their world outlook and experience.

The Internet according to him gives another experience propagating the culture of egalitarism and giving more perspectives for the young. Moreover, he refers to Joseph Epstein who considers that different cultures foster various types of learning, he singles out being informed, being hip and cultivated. The Internet assists in both becoming well-informed and hip, while the literary world helps readers become more cultivated “mastering significant things of lasting import” (Brooks). The literary world pays more attention to the identity of the author, the authority of the teacher is respected, while the Internet will not lose ground in the aspect of keeping a reader up-top-date in the “lively waters”. Brooks does not deny that the Internet fosters better conversationalists, but adds that is produces better students. The literary world for him remains an strong force in distinguishing important from less important and setting priorities.

David Brooks seems to consider the debate over the media quite pointless and is rather in favor of building an Internet counterculture that can better attract users to serious learning rather than merely entertainment, thereby making the important more prestigious (Brooks). It stands to reason that the role of both media cannot be overestimated but what should be kept in mind is the attitude to them and the way they are used in contemporary world that makes them either constructive or destructive.

Works Cited

Brooks, David. “The medium is the medium”. OP-ED Columnist.

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