Reading on the rise for the first time in 26 years. (Warning, link is to .pdf.)
The biggest rise in rates comes from young adults, who I would argue had been treated in this new century to a rather fertile selection of novels, series, graphic novels, and online material. People have claimed for years that "Americans don't read" despite the huge growth in big box bookstores which have always been packed with people when I've gone, even on Friday and Saturday nights.
Surprisingly, only one group of adults declined in reading over the last six years: 45-54 year olds, a key "when I was a kid" demographic of complainers who don't seem to be pulling their weight.
Bad news for The Tomato: poetry reading continues to decline. Oddly it comes from a steep decline among female poetry readers. Young men just aren't wooing like they used to, eh? And to think the great Charles Simic got into the poetry gig to impress a girl (as did many and many a poet, I suspect). Sigh.
What other nuggets are in there? Older readers less likely to read online articles. Also, older readers less likely to know how to use current technology figures hold static for the last one hundred years. I suspect spears came as quite a shock to the older generations of Neanderthals who grunted "sharp rocks good enough for me, good enough for me kids."
Readers now make up a slight majority of Americans. Based on how my family thinks, they'd take this as my cue to give up reading.
And on this note, let me tell you that I've finally decided to take another stab at reading and finishing Marcel Proust's Remembrance of Things Past.