Thursday, February 28, 2008

10 Inalienable Rights of the Reader (Daniel Pennac)

In 1992, the French author Daniel Pennac wrote Comme Un Roman in which he claimed that reading should never be used as a torture method by the educational system. The book ended with the following list:

The 10 Inalienable Rights of the Reader:
1. The right to not read
2. The right to skip pages
3. The right to not finish a book
4. The right to reread
5. The right to read anything
6. The right to "Bovary-ism," a textually-transmitted disease
7. The right to read anywhere
8. The right to sample and steal
9. The right to read out-loud
10. The right to be silent.

Bovary-ism means to mistake a book for real life.

Here are the original rules in french (because I'm french and because I believe there is nothing better than the original version of a text.

Les droits imprescriptibles du lecteur:

1. Le droit de ne pas lire.
2. Le droit de sauter des pages.
3. Le droit de ne pas finir un livre.
4. Le droit de relire.
5. Le droit de lire n'importe quoi.
6. Le droit au bovarysme (maladie textuellement transmissible)
7. Le droit de lire n'importe où.
8. Le droit de grappiller.
9. Le droit de lire à haute voix.
10. Le droit de nous taire.

My dad introduced me to this writer, this novel and specifically these rules at a very young age. As my love of reading grew they stayed in the back of my mind so I thought that I would share them.

What I'm currently reading: When I Walk by Rebecca Growers

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