The Ludic Reader

Last night I went to a local bookstore, InPrint, where three local readers (Bernie Cormier, Lisa Hrabluk and Mark Leger) and moderator, Signe Gurholt, talked about books and reading. It wasn’t particularly well-attended, although this might have been because it’s just days before Christmas and people’s social calendars are already maxed out. No matter – the discussion was lively, the questions thoughtful and the only thing that might have made it better from my point of view is if I were on the panel – because who likes talking about books more than me!

One interesting thing that came up was the idea of ludos which comes from the Latin ‘ludo’ meaning ‘I play’.  The ludic reading experience depends on the reader’s ability, positive expectations and correctful choices. When those three things come together- well, you know what happens, right? Reading transports, but as Dr. Ann Compton (English professor and award-winning poet) exclaimed at the conclusion of the discussion -it’s not about escapism. Reading requires active participation – we don’t turn our brains off to read, we turn them on.

I snooped around a little bit this morning and came across this article: The Psychology of Reading for Pleasure: Needs and Gratification

It’s an interesting read.

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One response to “The Ludic Reader

  1. Very interesting! I agree our brains have to be turned on but we also need a wonderful writer who is able to create a sense of atmosphere, a palpable feeling that you’re actually in the novel and I think that’s the difference between a good novel and a great one. Some that come to mind…Rebecca, Jane Eyre, The Secret History and many others I can’t think of right now.

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