Here are some readings from scholarly and popular sources to motivate classroom discussions. Have you used one of these articles in your class? Please click “leave a reply” to tell your (and your students’) impressions. Have a suggestion for other reading material? Contact us!

Fast Media/Media Fast

The subtitle of this book is “How to Clear Your Mind and Invigorate Your Life in an Age of Media Overload.” Thomas Cooper, a professor at Emerson College and former assistant to Marshall McLuhan, offers compelling reasons for going on a personal media diet. He also considers group fasting — and fast-breaking — by families, classes, Plain People, and the Rapa Nui of Easter

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Feed (A Novel)

This sci-fi story by M.T. Anderson imagines a future world where people connect to the Internet through feeds implanted in their brains. When a hacker disables their feeds and teenagers get a taste for thinking on their own, they decide to fight for more disconnection. (A National Book Award finalist.)

The End of Solitude

In this essay, William Deresiewicz discusses how technology is taking our ability to be alone — or, rather, how we are doing this to ourselves. When he asked students about the place that solitude has in their lives, one of them said she was so unsettled by being along that she must sit with friends while doing homework. Another asked him, “Why would anyone

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Is Google Making Us Stupid?

This article in The Atlantic magazine sparked nationwide conversations and propelled Nicholas Carr to write his book The Shallows. His work helped familiarize the reading public with scientific terms such as “dopamine squirt” and “neuroplasticity.” It also motivated some people to try disconnection to mitigate the influence of digital media on our brains.