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Whatit takes to be well read

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by aumz, 22 May 2006.

  1. aumz

    Hitman

    Joined: 6 Feb 2003

    Posts: 751

    Location: Sutton

    I have never really been a book person in my life, only forced reading for exams and assignments etc.

    When someone is regarded as "well read" what does that mean exactly. If I go out and read hundreds of mediocre books would I be considered well read or is it (as I assume) quality over quantity.

    Changes in my life have made me want to start reading books, from novels to autobigraphies. I would firstly like to make a list of books that are considered must reads. Such as the Dickens, Shakespears, etc of this world.
     
  2. Zefan

    Don

    Joined: 15 Jan 2006

    Posts: 30,826

    Location: Tosche Station

    Well read normally means they've been to university... well as far as I know. When you go to university you're said to be "Reading" your course. Like this, "Hi what're you doing?" reply = "I'm reading Politics at Cambridge." So someone who's highly educated is said to be well read.

    That's my view on it anyway.
     
  3. SiriusB

    Capodecina

    Joined: 16 Dec 2005

    Posts: 14,448

    Location: Manchester

    It can apply to anyone who has spent a considerable amount of time learning about a subject. Do not necessarily have to go to university to be well-read on something :)

    SiriusB
     
  4. Gilly

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 17 Oct 2002

    Posts: 95,526

    Location: I'm back baby!

    I'd call myself well read but never really considered going to Uni.
     
  5. Zefan

    Don

    Joined: 15 Jan 2006

    Posts: 30,826

    Location: Tosche Station

    In that case I'm well read in womenry :D
     
  6. SpicyDuck

    Soldato

    Joined: 10 Dec 2003

    Posts: 6,349

    Just don't make the mistake of pronouncing "read" as a verb, like I heard someone do in the past.

    "Well, I really do think I'm well reed", haha. :p

    Phil.
     
  7. Wryel

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 26 Mar 2005

    Posts: 1,663

    If you mean well read in terms of just books and not knowledge, I would say it was someone that has read a majority of the 'classics' - and can comment on all of them.
     
  8. Alex_L

    Mobster

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 3,026

    For me being well read is more about having a good general knowledge of things like history, politics, culture, geography, art & literature and just the world at large generally. I suppose traditionally you gained from reading, hence well read.

    I don't think someone who has studied for a degree is necessairly well read, because degress tend to be in a fairly specialised field, and I've met people with degrees who in my mind are very ignorant because they don't have any appreciation of thigns like history and literature or even the world at large
     
  9. penski

    PermaBanned

    Joined: 9 May 2005

    Posts: 20,834

    Location: NE8

    Four years and 52k of posts'll do that to a man ;)

    I take 'well read' to mean an intelligent person who has a broad knowledge base garnered from education (more self-education than scholastic) which he (come on..we all know wimmen only buy glossy magazines to look at the pretty pictures) can use readily and easily.

    *n
     
  10. Gilly

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 17 Oct 2002

    Posts: 95,526

    Location: I'm back baby!

    I think this is closest to how I would rate it. I've read Shakespeare, Dickens, Dostoevsky, Tolkien, Hugo, Tolstoy, Dumas, Orwell, Huxley, Chaucer, Milton, Defoe, Swift, Shelley, Twain, Wilde, Stevenson, Stoker, Steinbeck, etc, etc.

    To have read the majority of them and other important authors of (fairly) recent times I'd consider well read.

    Try 7 years and god knows how many posts :o

    Possibly 80k or more.
     
  11. spirit

    Wise Guy

    Joined: 18 Oct 2002

    Posts: 1,885

    its not just reading the books, understanding appreciating etc
     
  12. Gilly

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 17 Oct 2002

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    Location: I'm back baby!

    I don't think anyone could make it even half way through that list of authors without understanding. Either they'd develop the means or they'd get bored.
     
  13. theleg

    Capodecina

    Joined: 17 Oct 2002

    Posts: 13,420

    Location: UK

    Ive read none of those. Well bit of shakespeare and dickens in school but nothing past that.

    :o
     
  14. Mellownatts

    Hitman

    Joined: 14 Feb 2006

    Posts: 547

    Location: Leeds, W Yorks.

    I would say that it means that someone has a vast amount of knowledge in a particular subject.
     
  15. Gilly

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 17 Oct 2002

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    Nothing to be embarrassed about. I've been a bookworm as long as I can remember.
    Surely that would be a specialist in a subject. Not someone who is well read.
     
  16. theleg

    Capodecina

    Joined: 17 Oct 2002

    Posts: 13,420

    Location: UK

    Ive always taken well read to mean knowledge and understanding in a number of subjects...IE something along the lines of traditional wisdom.
     
  17. theleg

    Capodecina

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    Location: UK

    I read a lot but I guess I dont share the same opinions of great authors :o

    Id like to think im averagely smart but who knows.
     
  18. Gilly

    Man of Honour

    Joined: 17 Oct 2002

    Posts: 95,526

    Location: I'm back baby!

    So just an antonym of wise? Where does the reading come into it?

    But, then again, you might. You won't know unless you read their opinions though :p
     
  19. kitten_caboodle

    Soldato

    Joined: 21 Jul 2005

    Posts: 5,463

    Location: Frack off, nosey

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     
  20. theleg

    Capodecina

    Joined: 17 Oct 2002

    Posts: 13,420

    Location: UK

    Well you cant gain knowledge and understanding unless you read the stuff...although I guess it depends on the subjects involved. Reading the great works of fiction is one thing, but I dunno..

    Would you consider someone who has extensive knowledge of world politics as being well read? Even though they hadnt read the works of all those great authors?