Famous Comedian and American TV Star Groucho Marz once quipped, “I find television very educating. Every time somebody turns on the set, I go into the other room and read a book.”
Like eyes, books are windows to the soul of the writer. But that is just the beginning of it. Books offer their readers something to call their own because as they are reading or peeking into the castle of the author’s imagination, they are also building their own castles to live in. And what is best, it is a forever home. Books are nothing short of love letters to the soul of an aching heart, which stays with you forever. Ask any older person (or soul), and they will tell you the pleasure of seeking the company of books over people – their libraries tend to become their favorite resting place while they breathe on mother earth.
Books vs. Movies And TV Series 🆚
The brilliance of a room of one’s own where they remain besotted in the solitude of their thoughts made richer by the written word is an experience that language can only aspire to express. From heady smells that conjure memories of childhood or last season’s rain to anything intensely intimate, books open up a universe that an audio-visual medium simply does not replicate. Here are the best reasons why books are not just better but simply transcendental of any other medium, especially Films and TV shows of the present-day culture. The benefits of novels are not just individual but also social and emotional. Even the people who watched the Harry Potter movies ended up reading the books because they loved the wizarding world so much that they wanted to know about the story. This article will also be helpful for your school/college debates, group discussions, or even for writing essays.
1️⃣ Books Are Original Texts.
Books offer authenticity and unmediated originality, unlike films that are generally adaptations of written texts or an audio-visual rendering of the scripts. Because of this reason alone, books have a personality that is difficult to recreate. The authors burn their midnight oil, and we know from the history of the greatest authors that they even sacrifice their lives and relationships to serve the gods of literature. The product of it is often a gift to mother earth unlike any other.
Films, at least the mainstream cinema, are uniquely commercial undertakings that compromise the originality of both ideas and their narration. They are more interested in cheap thrills and glitziness to maximize returns at the box office. They are also known to substitute action for drama to build popular appeal. However, there are still some great movies and series adaptations that stayed loyal to the books and gave us a wonderful visual experience; we listed some of them here.
2️⃣ Books Offer Better Detail.
Books are more complex and in-depth works than movies and series and offer more nuanced and engaging visualization. There are wonderful books with an “Exquisite Writing” style that adds more power to the words. The celebrated author and celebrity Paulo Coelho once famously said, “The book is a film that takes place in the mind of the reader.” Translating the complexity of character development in books to the screen is difficult. Books give more space for character development.
Secondly, as long as they are in it, one gets an opportunity to get into every character’s head – no matter how relevant to the story or not. It is a camera’s equivalent to a 360-degree experience. A small example of it is Ken Kesey’s book “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest”. Chief Bromden is a relatively minor character in the film. But on the other hand, when we read the book, we find that he had narrated it himself, and the readers get a deep exposure to his thoughts, which the film fails to do.
3️⃣ Books Are Lasting And Evolve With You.
Unlike films and series that work on an average tight runtime of two and a half hours, books have the luxury of finding more space and time; therefore, they last longer. It also helps authors of books to give more depth and detail to the story and characters and their contexts. Books can span several decades without any loss of detail. Likewise, books also provide people with the choice of time that they need to absorb them. Readers rarely finish a book in two or three hours.
People have the luxury to read at their own pace and finish it in days, weeks, or months. Slowly but steadily, something exciting happens in the long term. Books evolve with us. We can read the same book at different points in our lives and find something new almost every time. The magic of the books is that they speak differently to other people, or even the same people on a trajectory of experiences, in many different ways. Like good wine, books evolve with us.
4️⃣ Books Inspire Creativity And Help You Find A Voice.
Books amplify the imagination of their readers and continuously push them to the edge of their curiosities and sense of wonder. Because of this, avid readers have highly creative inner lives, most of whom are also artists of one form or another. When we read books, we become authors and storytellers ourselves. It helps us develop a special connection with language and improves our vocabulary and feelings about the written realm. In the same way, Books help us find our voice, that is, the flair for speaking, writing, and thinking about the world. These are things one does not derive from an experience of cinematic forms.
5️⃣ Books Are Collector’s Items.
One cannot miss the rare beauty of an imposing library racked from end to end by handsome hardbound originals. The sensory delights of the book are too many to count. They appeal to the sense of touch with their crispy pages and canvas or leather covers. It resembles holding your beloved in your arms. The fragrance of books sets you off on a voyage of memories and rapture. The appearance of a space filled with books also refines the appearance, not just the individual who inhabits it."The fragrance of books sets you off on a voyage of memories and rapture." 😍 Do you agree? ❤️
6️⃣ They Are Souvenirs Of A Life Well-Lived. They Are Personal.
At forty-five, do you remember the stories of Arabian Nights narrated by mom as you lay tucked in bed next to a bowl of soupy noodles, and she asked you to sleep as there was school the next day? Your elder sister shared with you her favorite atlas and told you where the ice age began. That John Keats classic with your college crush’s signature and phone number on its back page that they secretly sneaked into your college bag?
Are your father’s first book of the beat generation poetry or your mom’s inaugural Simone de Beauvoir now resting in your attic? Years later, when you have left home only to find your own habitat in this pale blue dot called Earth, you carefully collect and store these priceless possessions as an inheritance of a bond, an heirloom. They are not just physical matter that stores information or knowledge; books also communicate love and care.
Books bring us back home and keep us fused together with our best memories of thinking and doing things. Books narrate stories not just of their contents but also of people who have owned them and passed them on. In this way, they are mementos and bespoke portals of lives and histories that matter. On the other hand, movies and series lack personalization and appear as commodities that have little to offer in terms of intimacies and memory.
7️⃣ Books Bring People Together.
Books don’t just bind the pages between their covers. They also keep people fused together in common interests. Whether it is holy books such as the Quran and Bible, epics such as Mahabharata, or books of philosophy and Arts, people spend a better part of their lives in proximity to the communities that develop around books. Religions, cults, artists, scholars, fan fiction communities, homemakers, children, and the elderly come together in their own niche groups to make meaning and find their feet in the world around them. The continued existence of literary clubs and reading groups bear testimony that books facilitate social bonds.
8️⃣ Books Mean Independence From Electricity, The Internet, And Subscriptions.
Economic calculations suggest that investing in books has a better return on entertainment per dollar when compared to expenditure incurred in cinema halls. People spend more on theatre visits, popcorn and beverages, and commuting to and from home than on a book. But this is not all. So many hidden costs do not come to mind until making a conscious comparison.
If we assume that people watch content at home, then to have a truly immersive experience will require access to a stable internet connection, paid access to OTT streaming platforms that might need to be many, good quality audio devices, and quality hardware such as 4K resolution screens and monitors. These commodities are prohibitively expensive and also require a subscription, insurance, maintenance costs, and service schedules.
Books represent freedom from the consumerism required for the above and can be read with your eyes closed. Well, not literally. Whether you are traveling to an African desert in a caravan or flying above the Antarctic peninsula, you have no bother in the world about the accessories needed to enjoy the content enclosed between your book cover. It is as close to freedom as one can get.
9️⃣ Books Are Attention-Friendly And Do Not Come With Advertisements.
This is an advantage to which the young generation will especially relate. People in their twenties and thirties struggle to make ends meet in the unsparing economies of the world. More often than not, they are short on financial resources to afford premium subscriptions to streaming services. The result is an unspeakably pesky experience of unwanted advertisements that hound them like prison dogs from pillar to post.
Attention span is a rare and short-lived gift of homo sapiens, and we lose it in the sea of promotional messaging. However, when it comes to a book, there is a distinctness of privacy and focus that is quite simply inimitable. You do not have to purchase the silence you need to immerse yourself in your favorite fiction or non-fiction. Just take out your favorite hardcover and lose yourself in it. You can be sure that no car loans and make-up advertisements will ever gnaw at your grey matter again.
🔟 Reading Is A Life Skill.
It is one of the lesser-discussed facts about reading. It is like a muscle that grows when you work it. Reading develops reading. And it is a phenomenal life skill. It helps children in school feel more confident and allows scholars to wade through the bottomless sea of literature in which they must find their own subsistence. For people not enrolled in academic setups to earn their livelihoods, the reading acumen developed by reading books comes in handy to guide children in academic and non-academic pursuits. Overall, one can say that it helps parents provide a better upbringing to their children, and it helps them cultivate better personalities for their wards.
Ameen is an artist and traveller who prefers a minimalist life amidst nature. He is deeply drawn to animals, music and mindfulness in human relationships.