The culture of reading under the spell of electronic communication

Проблемы коммуникаций Электронное пространство

Electronic communications are known to have given rise to the wide-ranging rejection of the previous, seemingly well-established reading habits as they had been entrenched throughout the centuries, which has come to look to many as something to welcome. With this in mind, the actual situation in the realm of reading and reasoning can be assessed as troublesome and even alarming taking into account the acute nature of the present-day managerial problems of the global village nature (“The global village absolutely ensures maximal disagreement on all points.” – Marshall McLuhan), which testify most clearly to the need of bringing together both empathic involvement  and analytical detachment on the part of people at large as being indispensable to the solution of major global problems.

So, as far as the general culture of reading is concerned, its increasing role paradoxically manifests itself in a twofold contradictory way. On the one hand, what we know about the simultaneity of electronic communication perception and thinking with its process pattern recognition culture needs texts and hypertexts to reflect on to understand them properly in a multifunctional way (to begin with Marshall McLuhan’s “Our children are striving to carry out to the printed page the all-involving sensory mandate of the TV image” to go on respectively with regard to the reading habits developments later on).

On the other hand, reading continuous to be quite meaningful in the old traditional sense being the only generally accessible means to develop independent thinking of the diachronic, consecutive nature as the indispensable part of collective reasoning and action. Without the two going together we are bound to be dependent on various manifestations of the ping pong ball mentality further on.
The role of the rapidly growing community of those who operate both within the electronic communication realm and outside of it may be problem key importance due to the fact that the major human problems urgently need both literate and post-literate thinking to be solved worldwide.

With this in mind, the author considers the present-day education problems in particular in relation to its adequacy for fulfilling the task in question in terms of electronic mentality figures against the Gutenberg mentality ground vs. electronic mentality figures against the electronic mentality ground.

Key words: electronic media, modes of perception and thinking, education, paradigm, anomaly, process pattern recognition and replay.