I am occasionally disappointed by students’ lack of reading culture. It would seem that most students in Mauritius do not like reading, I mean interesting reading (not the silly Mills & Boon/Harlequin/Danielle Steele type, nor reading of sensational news about celebrities or crimes).
Which to my mind is the same as saying that they don’t like to learn… You can’t learn things if you don’t like reading, can you?
One little anecdote:
I recently reminded a class of University students about a book I had cited very often to know if any had felt the need to purchase it (not an expensive buy: only Rs 525). Noone had of course. Worse, one student even asked whether it would be used for other modules, presumably to know if the purchase of the ‘commodity’ would be worth it!
I’ve been advising all my students to take a subscription to a library such as The British Council or the Centre Culturel Charles Baudelaire since ages. Noone has yet…
Most tend to claim that books are expensive in Mauritius (I agree), that they don’t have much time to read as they work, have a family life, etc. (I won’t take that!)
Of course, one cannot blame them entirely. The system we operate in has never really allowed people (young and old) to discover the beauty of reading quality books and magazines. When they reach uni, it’s even more difficult to inculcate that culture.
Yet, sometimes it makes me feel like saying that we should not allow students in University if they do not like/love reading. I suspect that if that criterion were to be, we would have only a handful of students, if any!