Reading is power!

What do Mark Twain, one of the greatest American writers and Mo Yan, a Chinese writer who has won Nobel Prize have in common? It’s obvious that they are both great writers and has brought readers distinctive insights about lives and society. But one common trait that is not well known is that they haven’t been to college. Then how did they gain such literary skills? The answer is through reading. Mark Twain dropped out of school when he was 12 and started working. In later years, he gained great success through educating himself in public libraries. Mo Yan, also dropped out of school at a young age and he benefited greatly from being a librarian and read loads of books. Through reading, these successful authors were able to combine their personal experience with literary skills and create wonderful works. From here, we can see how reading can cultivate people’s vision and knowledge. For those who didn’t remain in the mainstream education system, reading plays a crucial role in their growth. American author Tara Westover’s life experience can also demonstrate this. She wasn’t able to acquire middle school and high school education, but because of her persistence in reading, she got into college and pursued a doctor degree at last. in her memoir Educated, Westover used her personal experiences to illustrate the benefits and spiritual progresses books brought her. Though Westover grew up in a family with paranoid fear for government and outside world, the spring of knowledge scoured the barrenness and vacancy in her mind.


Besides taking us closer to the goal of utilitarian success, reading also influences us in intangible but profound ways. For instance, reading makes us moderate and curious. Socrates said, “The only true wisdom is to know that you know nothing.” In books, we read about influential history events, revolutions and how great people have devote their lives to making the world better. Through this process, we learn how great world is and how insignificant we are. Books make us realize that knowledge is infinite, and we should always keep a humble and curious mind. The pride and complacency will be replaced by modesty. A lack of enthusiasm for visiting the library will be supplanted by an admiration for knowledge and wisdom. We can stay eager and curious about learning and exploring.


Further, reading also brings us courage and determination. The success in life is not just decided by wealth and social status, it is also decided by how people react while encountering obstacles in life. Reading enabled us to build value systems and beliefs that can’t be destroyed easily. Through reading books, we learn about the failure, desperation and traumas of others, after which we can be more hopeful and stronger when ourselves meet difficulties. We can keep a positive and optimistic mind even when we are in the worst circumstances. During pandemic, my own life was very much disturbed and affected by the isolation and loneliness. Sometimes, I felt confused and hopeless about life meanings and my life goals. It was reading that showed me the light at the end of the tunnel. In particular, Maugham’s book Of human bondage consoled me. Philip Carey, in the novel, was a disabled orphan who grew up with no love and care, but persisted on pursuing his own life values and life goals. His resistance towards fate touched me and brought me a lot of positive energy.


There are other examples exemplify that books help people went through difficulties during pandemic. For example, a famous bookstore called Shakespeare and company went bankrupt due to the effect of Covid 19. When it was about to shut down, it sent out the message to ask for help. Since, they receive 5000 orders during one week and the orders came from different countries.

This event absolutely demonstrates that people are considering reading a symbol of knowledge, truth love and strength. Book have the power to unite people together since they convey human’s imperfect but sincere affections in the most powerful way. I believe everyone can harvest a lot through reading. Let’s start reading together now!!