“Geographies of Empathy” at SLSA 2022 Conference

There’s been a lot of fascinating scholarship on affective reading and, more recently, on the outsized role of empathic reading and “bibliotherapy” in social media. Inspired by Sarah Brouillette’s recent essay in Post45 and e.g. Joseph Worthen’s on “Empathy Aptitude Reading”, last month John Shanahan presented work-in-progress about “One Book One Chicago” geography data (and subject of a forthcoming paper by John and Mihaela Stoica). The presentation at SLSA 2022 (Society for Literature Science and the Arts) at Purdue explores… Read more

What does your demographic profile say about your leisure reading habits?

According to the U.S. Department of Labor American Time Use report, in 2014 women spent an average of 6 minutes or more reading for pleasure than men. People aged 75 and older recorded the most amount of time reading by far — an average 61.2─67 minutes per day. People aged 15─19 and 25─44 read the least, an average 5.4─11.4 minutes a day. In a breakdown by race, Whites reported leisure reading three and a half times more than Hispanics or Latinos. The latter spent the least amount of time reading for personal interest, 5.4 minutes on weekdays and 6 minutes on weekends. Unemployed people read three times… Read more

Do Americans Read for Leisure?

According to a 2014 American Time Use Survey, on average people aged 15 and older spent more than three-fourths of their leisure time – a total of 234 minutes (77.4% of their free time) on any given day – either watching TV, socializing and communicating, playing games, or using the computer. They spent only 19 minutes a day on leisure reading, 6.2% of their free time. The rest (52 minutes) was spent relaxing, thinking, or on other leisure activities.

Time Use GraphRead more