Thinkers have professed over the course of history that societies must get rid of ignorance for wisdom means a lot. One source of wisdom could be a better reading culture through deepen multiple philosophies of science, religion and politics but with various perspectives. That is where we could find scholars idea between lines from the writers deep observation and illustrated by in understandable words to sip knowledge open to soul.
In simple observation, for instance, we can learn from parts of the world which are endowed with enormous natural resources but are still under the yoke of insecurity, and poverty.
No matter what history tells about the paradox of books and therefore reading culture would offer; a well impacted reading culture is believed to be beneficial for a society in all round. But what makes a reading culture poor? Starting from individuals’ lack of interest various reasons could be listed out for this. In Ethiopia, particularly these days it seems not easy to take simple justification over the rates of reading cultures among the population. However, it is understandable that majority would set outside of the ‘readers circle’.
Perhaps, different explanations could be forwarded but role models would take the first step in this regard. In a family, for instance, it would leave a chance neither a father nor a mother has cultured reading even a newspaper let alone other publications. Sociologists viewed that family is the first and foremost institution to shape and influence children’s life either negatively or positively, so does for reading.
On the other hand the ever-increasing price of books sponsor for expensiveness of fine books. Where due to high tax rates would worsening the situation. To this one may prefer borrowing rather than owning a book. In third place and most vigorously, the ever increasing social media circle has the superior deal to take reading interest to the digital world.
In my opinion, the main problem is not the long-existing social interactions but the very reluctance to read books which in one way or another casts a shadow to discourage writer. Irrespective of the literacy rate considerable to the population size Ethiopia inhabits with young majority, one can consider the amount of copies an author would sell.
With no as such well accounted book selling boom in Ethiopia, western writers such as Robert Ludlum and Sidney Sheldon have sold each of their books in millions of copies. A book by Steven Covey “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” is another with over 15 million copies sold worldwide. Despite the major publication in Amharic language at this time lack of books provided into many languages of the country can also be another roadblock to the development of reading culture.
Obvious that families and schools have greater role for the improvement of the reading habit. Government, on the other hand, may require incentivizing publishers, writers and books sellers. Whereas consolidating peer reading groups and critical reflections on the material read would also be an essential ingredient.