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Writing's Power To Deceive

By Andrew Elfenbein/The Conversation

When I was researching and writing my new book, The Gist of Reading, I wanted to explore long-held assumptions about reading and how we process what we read.

Some of these assumptions have changed through time. For example, as novels became popular in the 18th century, many warned that they were dangerous and had the potential to cultivate ignorance and immorality in readers, especially female ones.

Today, many would consider that view antiquated. People probably think that reading a narrative - fiction or otherwise - might be able to influence a reader's opinions or personal beliefs. But their prior knowledge of real-world facts should be safe.

For example, readers might read a story in which a character mentions in passing that Hillary Clinton, rather than Donald Trump, won the 2016 election. This shouldn't influence readers' ability to quickly respond that Trump was the real winner, right?

And yet I came across a substantial amount of psychology work that has demonstrated how reading stories - both nonfiction and fiction - has a powerful ability to distort readers' prior knowledge.

Continue reading "Writing's Power To Deceive" »
Posted on February 20, 2018

History Club

A People's History Of Thanksgiving

Where Is The Gold?
With fifty men we could subjugate them all and make them do whatever we want.
Continue reading "A People's History Of Thanksgiving" »
Posted on November 28, 2013
Chicago Blog Review

Chicago Blog Review: Fruit Slinger

A welcome blast of summer-friendly food porn on a daily basis.
Continue reading "Chicago Blog Review: Fruit Slinger" »
Posted on August 6, 2009

Writing's Power To Deceive

By Andrew Elfenbein/The Conversation
Did George Washington really become president?

Posted on February 20, 2018

The Last 100 Days Of FDR

By Roosevelt University
A death watch.

Posted on February 15, 2018

Two Poems

By Steve Rhodes
Please pick me I need the money bad.

Posted on February 14, 2018

Publisher Files Censorship Suit Against Illinois Department Of Corrections

By The Uptown People's Law Center
The Human Rights Defense Center publishes Prison Legal News, a 72-page monthly publication that covers news and court rulings related to the criminal justice system. PLN has been published for more than 27 years and has received the First Amendment Award from the Society of Professional Journalists. HRDC also distributes around 50 self-help and legal books of interest to prisoners. More than 200 Illinois prisoners subscribe to PLN.

Posted on February 13, 2018

The Hidden History Of Black Nationalist Women's Political Activism

By Keisha N. Blain/The Conversation
During the Great Depression, Chicago was one of the key cities where black nationalist women organized.

Posted on February 5, 2018

Meet The Deplorables

By Stephanie Jo/Media Kitty
Undercover deep in the heart of Trump America.

Posted on February 1, 2018

Blood Oil

By Leif Wenar/The Conversation
More than half of the oil traded across the world has been stolen.

Posted on January 29, 2018

Michael Flynn, Rogue Star

By Steve Rhodes
Titles for our times.

Posted on January 24, 2018

MUSIC - Chicago In The Rockies.
TV - Archie Bunker On Gun Control.
POLITICS - The Paradise Papers: The African Satellite Scheme.
SPORTS - Black Blackhawk vs. Racist Fans.

BOOKS - Writing's Power To Deceive.

PEOPLE PLACES & THINGS - RECALL! Triple T Chicken Salad.

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