Title: The Inventive Act of Reading
Author: CS de Beer
The importance of reading and of reading well in an age characterised by the decline of literacy and literateness cannot be overemphasised. It seems decisive to bring out the importance of reading at a time when it seems as if this enriching human endeavour is no longer of central importance for intellectual life to flourish.
This publication claims a high level of relevance and deserves to be carefully attended to. An active discussion on ways to replace a culture of illiteracy (camouflaged as functional literacy) with the full scope of comprehensive literacy is desperately needed in society.
The comprehensively literate person would be the reader who engages in the act of reading in an adventurous way. That would imply: Rather than merely repeating texts or memorising texts, readers should be able to come up, in their reading of texts, with new meanings for constant change and new circumstances: inventive acts of reading. This implies a plea for an education to full readership and by implication to the cultivation of comprehensive literacy. No reader should ever be satisfied with the minimum of meaning. The richness of being and the wealth of language guarantee to readers, and for any text to be read, an equal wealth of meanings, and richness of inventions for all circumstances of life.
Prof. CS (Fanie) de Beer is Emeritus Professor in the Department of Information Science, University of South Africa (Unisa), Pretoria, and is currently related to the Department of Information Science, University of Pretoria.
He graduated in Agriculture, and Philosophy (doctoral studies), at the University of Pretoria and acquired a post-doctoral qualification in Philosophy at the University of Paris X. Nanterre, France. He taught Philosophy, Communications and Information Science at various universities, undertook research in all these fields, and was involved in consultancy work in the fields of knowledge generation, invention, dissemination and application. He is currently engaged in research in the following fields: the philosophy and theory of information, philosophies and theories of technics and technology, of knowledge invention, dissemination and utilisation. He is also committed to research on reading theory and literacy, on the re-invention of human spirituality and noology, on the ethics of knowledge and science, and on theories of informatisation and plasticity.
He has published widely in all these fields.