Reading More Classics
2015级 计算机科学与技术学院 沈俊东
Several days ago, when I was attentively reading the classical novel The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain, a question addressed by my classmate suddenly hit me, “Why do you read classics since they may be outdated in this modern world?” His question was quite thought-provoking.
Certainly we do not read classics because reading classics is easy and mindless. On the contrary, given that the classics have profound ideas and rich literariness, reading classics is rather demanding and intellectual for many people.
Nor do we read classics because we will be surrounded by praise and envy, or because people around us will view us with respect. Actually, reading classics has nothing to do with others and it is just about ourselves.
Why, then, should we read classics?
We read classics because classics can equip us with knowledge and give us a better understanding and appreciation of our life, history, society, world and space.
We read classics because we like the freedom, pleasures, unpredictability and surprise in books. When we are buried in classics, beyond doubt, we will gain wonderful joy that nothing else can provide.
We read classics because classics are crystallizations of wisdom and awesome works of famous writers. After reading classics, such as novels written by Mark Twain or the plays of Shakespeare, we may learn great writing skills and abundant literary material.
So, reading classics gives us comprehensive appreciation of culture, remarkable language skills, colorful deep thought and elegant literary beauty.
I have left out, however, the most important reason why we should read classics. When reading classics, we are taking the priceless opportunity to communicate with the greatest minds in history around the world, in that classics are beyond geographical and ethnic barriers and have broken the limits of space and time. We read classics because it can lengthen and broaden the time and space we live in and make us better human beings.