In my last post, I mentioned my recent discovery of a multitude of excellent book blogs on the Internet. One such blog is Hey Lady ! Whatcha Readin' ? The author of this particular blog is helping promote a challenge to get readers to focus their attention on specific reading goals, as opposed to just reading the first "shiny and pretty thing" that grabs the eye. I think this is a very worthy cause so I'm going to promote it. So you ask, what am I going to do in order to read deliberately in 2010 ?
- Read more books from the library- MINE ! I have a rather sizable personal library of books I have amassed over the years. Yet as many of you know, I am constantly borrowing books from my public library. I think in 2010 I will make an effort to read as many of own books as possible, instead of grabbing stuff from the library. I will probably fail in this effort, but I will at least try.
- Read more quality fiction. Thankfully, last year I did read several excellent works of fiction. This year, I hope to read at least a few more. But since I am such a nonfiction addict, this will not be easy.
- Revisit Liberation Theology. Years ago I had a mentor who happened to be the Protestant chaplain at my local state university. After he retired he gave me well, basically his clerical library. As a result, I am the proud owner of a wealth of books devoted to the Church's response to human suffering, poverty and injustice in the developing world. As Christianity becomes a growing political and social factor to be reckoned with in the "global south", perhaps these classic texts can help shed insight on this vital and overlooked growing phenomena.
- Newer is not always better. I have a number of books in my personal library over 30, 40 and even 50 years old. Instead of reading something just because it is new, why not read some forgotten yet incredibly interesting book from the past ?
- Poor man's seminary. Speaking of my personal library, I possess no small number of books dealing with theology, church history, comparative religion and other related subjects. Instead of borrowing these kind of books from my public library, I should probably read what is already in my possession.
- Get in touch with my inner James Burke. For years I have been an avid fan of James Burke and his BBC series Connections. One night at a party I was reconnecting with a guy who I knew was also a huge James Burke fan. When I asked him if he'd seen any of Burke's newest editions of the series Connections he answered, "no, I really just want to BE him", implying that he was concentrating his efforts on reading more books devoted to history, technology and social change. Like someone once said, "don't dream it, be it".
Well, there we are. I will probably fall way short of my goals. But hey, I can still dream, can't I ?