User:Jahsonic/Women read fiction, men read non-fiction
From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
Women read fiction, men read non-fiction, I wrote in 2006 and the subject has continued to intrigue me from three perspectives.
- Just what is the nature of the reading experience.
- Women have always read more fiction, women have often been the first professional writers and have produced a score of successful authors (most recently I found the example of Neel Doff in the Néerlandosphere), yet have been patriarchally excluded from literary histories.
- Reading too much is undesirable, it will give you too much knowledge, too much knowledge kills (cfr. tree of knowledge, curiosity killed the cat, The Man Who Knew Too Much, The Girl Who Knew Too Much, but also see Anna Karenina and Emma Bovary and the danger of reading too much.
Lady Reading the Letters of Heloise and Abelard (c.1780) is an oil painting by French painter Auguste Bernard d'Agesci and its subject was a female reader swooning over the love letters by Abelard and Heloise in the posthumously published Letters of Heloise and Abelard.
Love letters, it must be said, has been one of the most popular genres in the history of literature. Consider the aforementioned Letters of Heloise and Abelard, but also Letters of a Portuguese Nun and Love-Letters Between a Nobleman and His Sister. See also amatory fiction and the epistolary novel.
"Love letters, it must be said, has been one of the most popular genres in the history of literature." Why? Because it reduces the reader to the part of eavesdropper or voyeur, it allows you to step out of yourself and live the life of another.