The Next Time Someone Says the Internet Killed Reading Books, Show Them This Chart – Alexis Madrigal – Technology – The Atlantic
All this to say: our collective memory of past is astoundingly inaccurate. Not only has the number of people reading not declined precipitously, it’s actually gone up since the perceived golden age of American letters.
So, then why is there this widespread perception that we are a fallen literary people? I think, as Marshall Kirkpatrick says, that social media acts as a kind of truth serum. Before, only the literary people had platforms. Now, all the people have platforms. And so we see that not everyone shares our love for Dos Passos. Or any books at all. Or reading in general.