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Old 11-24-2017, 11:05 AM   #31
rcentros
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I'm not going to read the study because I don't read novels (SF, Fantasy or otherwise) for "effort" or "purpose" – I read them to be entertained. I read non-fiction to learn something, but even then it's because it's something I *want* to learn, not because of the "effort." I think there are certain people who think anything that is not "deep" (in their judgment) to be "frivolous and "beneath" them (i.e., they're snobs). It's why comedy movies are hardly ever taken seriously for awards – even though comedic acting often takes more acting skill than does acting in a drama. But this anti-SF/Fantasy bias is not new. As G.K. Chesterton wrote in "Orthodoxy, "odd" people, like odd novels ... or in his own words ...

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Oddities do not strike odd people. This is why ordinary people have a much more exciting time; while odd people are always complaining of the dulness of life.This is also why the new novels die so quickly, and why the old fairy tales endure for ever. The old fairy tale makes the hero a normal human boy; it is his adventures that are startling; they startle him because he is normal. But in the modern psychological novel the hero is abnormal; the centre is not central. Hence the fiercest adventures fail to affect him adequately, and the book is monotonous. You can make a story out of a hero among dragons; but not out of a dragon among dragons. The fairy tale discusses what a sane man will do in a mad world. The sober realistic novel of to-day discusses what an essential lunatic will do in a dull world.
I'll take SF/Fantasy over "effortful and purposeful" reading EVERY time.

Last edited by rcentros; 11-24-2017 at 11:19 AM.
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Old 11-24-2017, 11:52 AM   #32
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Usually, when a college professor does such a study, the random people are students of the college and frequently students in his department. That's one of the dirty little secrets of social science studies and why so many studies generate rather slanted results.

My first comment is after reading the paragraphs, I'm rather surprised that anyone did more than scan them.

Here is the first sentence - "Jim takes a deep breath, bracing himself before pushing open the glass door. Mrs. Moyers glances at him once and then drops her eyes to her menu, which she continues reading with improbable intensity ..."

That's horrible writing. Maybe they should have recruited someone from the English department to write something for them, or given the state of universities these days, maybe they did.

Now, if they were to say that certain keywords caused people to read the text with more care, I would agree. But I certainly don't see how they could come up with the conclusion that they did. Frankly, a lot of their assertions seem to be based of subjective criteria and supposition.
Horrible would be a step up.

On the study, I might be willing to bet you get extra credit on your next test if you participate in the study. So that gives you the great students and the need to bring my grade up to pass students.

So not random people and probably not even readers.
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Old 11-24-2017, 11:55 AM   #33
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I'm not going to read the study because I don't read novels (SF, Fantasy or otherwise) for "effort" or "purpose" – I read them to be entertained. I read non-fiction to learn something, but even then it's because it's something I *want* to learn, not because of the "effort." I think there are certain people who think anything that is not "deep" (in their judgment) to be "frivolous and "beneath" them (i.e., they're snobs). It's why comedy movies are hardly ever taken seriously for awards – even though comedic acting often takes more acting skill than does acting in a drama. But this anti-SF/Fantasy bias is not new. As G.K. Chesterton wrote in "Orthodoxy, "odd" people, like odd novels ... or in his own words ...



I'll take SF/Fantasy over "effortful and purposeful" reading EVERY time.
On your last sentence, this in a nutshell. Unless of course, it is say a recipe for pecan pie. That takes effort and is for a purpose.
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Old 11-24-2017, 12:12 PM   #34
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Horrible would be a step up.

On the study, I might be willing to bet you get extra credit on your next test if you participate in the study. So that gives you the great students and the need to bring my grade up to pass students.

So not random people and probably not even readers.
When my wife was a student in the psych department, each class had a requirement that you participate in X hours of studies.
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Old 11-24-2017, 12:15 PM   #35
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I'm wondering why the study singled out science fiction. What about other genre labels vs. the "literary fiction" label?

I hate science fiction, but I'm not a fan of so-called literary fiction either.
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Old 11-24-2017, 12:16 PM   #36
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Because most people are not fans of science fiction? SF fans are probably a minority in every totally random sampling.
Actually I believe that SF is one of the biggest genre's out there. Romance (I think) is the biggest. And if most people aren't fans of SF then why are there always so many movies made in the genre? Hollywood doesn't have a habit of throwing money away. When a studio spends money on a movie they expect to see returns via the box office.
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Old 11-24-2017, 12:19 PM   #37
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Actually I believe that SF is one of the biggest genre's out there. Romance (I think) is the biggest. And if most people aren't fans of SF then why are there always so many movies made in the genre? Hollywood doesn't have a habit of throwing money away. When a studio spends money on a movie they expect to see returns via the box office.
That's what we need a study on SF vs Romance.

Now on that study, which version did students read first since it is the exact same with a few marker words changed.
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Old 11-24-2017, 12:23 PM   #38
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On your last sentence, this in a nutshell. Unless of course, it is say a recipe for pecan pie. That takes effort and is for a purpose.
Some SF can also illustrate real world concepts of science. For example The Quantum Connection by Travis S. Taylor illustrates a good number of concepts that are part of modern Quantum Mechanics. If I were to try to read some of the complex books on the subject I may well become hopelessly lost what with all the complex maths but when presented in a story I can get the gist of a given concept (such as Quantum connectedness or Cosmic Consciousness) without becoming lost.
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Old 11-24-2017, 01:20 PM   #39
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I used to be a master at avoiding those surveyors with clipboards in the malls. Anybody of even meager intelligence is probably the same. So anytime a study presents a finding that mentions "the majority of people", I mentally overwrite that definition with "the majority of people too dumb to avoid a survey". So the surveys conclusions are a consolidation of the opinions of idiots. Worthless.
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Old 11-24-2017, 01:21 PM   #40
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Actually I believe that SF is one of the biggest genre's out there. Romance (I think) is the biggest. And if most people aren't fans of SF then why are there always so many movies made in the genre? Hollywood doesn't have a habit of throwing money away. When a studio spends money on a movie they expect to see returns via the box office.
There are a lot more people who watch movies (whatever the genre) than there are people who read novels. I guess things might be somewhat different in the US, but in my country the adults who read SF are pretty rare. Fantasy and SF are not considered "the adult thing". Even though there are many SF and fantasy books translated into our local language and that trend seems not to be diminishing.
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Old 11-24-2017, 01:30 PM   #41
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There are a lot more people who watch movies (whatever the genre) than there are people who read novels. I guess things might be somewhat different in the US, but in my country the adults who read SF are pretty rare. Fantasy and SF are not considered "the adult thing". Even though there are many SF and fantasy books translated into our local language and that trend seems not to be diminishing.
I think the main problem is we forget we are the abnormal ones. You know those that read for fun.
Kind of reminds me of a friend from high school. A few years ago, he asked me why I always carried so many books. I gave him 3 reasons. One I liked to read, two it made a good divider between me and whatever guy wanted to sit by me and three the paperback was very good for whacking hands that went where they shouldn't be.
He said you never whacked my hands.
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Old 11-24-2017, 02:57 PM   #42
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Thanks for the links. I did find it humourous that the "science fiction" seemed to have a military setting whereas the "narrative realism" did not. Perhaps a difference that makes no difference but again, I can't see why they did not generate the two texts without those differences. Corporal Jones vs. Jim, Engineer Grady vs. Mrs. Moyer, ensign vs. waitress, etc. None of those changes are needed to imply a science fiction setting and quite a few people of my acquaintance react badly to military settings.
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Old 11-24-2017, 02:59 PM   #43
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I can get the gist of a given concept (such as Quantum connectedness or Cosmic Consciousness) without becoming lost.
If you think you are beginning to understand quantum theory, time to roll a sanity check.
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Old 11-24-2017, 08:02 PM   #44
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Thanks for the links. I did find it humourous that the "science fiction" seemed to have a military setting whereas the "narrative realism" did not. Perhaps a difference that makes no difference but again, I can't see why they did not generate the two texts without those differences. Corporal Jones vs. Jim, Engineer Grady vs. Mrs. Moyer, ensign vs. waitress, etc. None of those changes are needed to imply a science fiction setting and quite a few people of my acquaintance react badly to military settings.
I bet one of the reasons people didn't read the 'science fiction' as carefully was because they were too busy wondering why an ensign was waiting tables. .
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Old 11-24-2017, 11:51 PM   #45
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If you think you are beginning to understand quantum theory, time to roll a sanity check.
I didn't say he put it into complex scientific terms. He used analogy like the idea that the net is not unlike the road system. And if the universe is connected to itself then you have the situation where two particles can be light years apart and what happens to one will have an effect on the other because they are connected at the quantum level. In theory I gather you could transmit a message across light years in the blink of an eye because somehow time doesn't factor into things. He also used the theory of the Alcubierre drive in his two novels.
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