The opening salvo was Gregory Currie's essay, "Does Great Literature Make Us Better?
" which asserts that the widely held belief that reading makes us more moral has little support.
Some books have very useful appendices and reference sections which will help you to develop your knowledge of how to construct an academic essay or assignment. This book provides some very useful suggestions on the process of writing, such as time management techniques, and also provides hints on writing theses and examination answers. It will be of value to students as a self-study tool, both for undergraduate and postgraduate students.
It would be a pity to discount the use of books altogether, although no book will contain everything that you need to become a perfect academic writer (if such a concept of 'perfect writer' ever exists). Many of them are the sort of books that are used in class with the teacher, but all of them are widely available. The 'try it out' sections are particularly helpful for anyone wishing to develop their writing at a practical level.
Rather, the stories from these books and so many others became part of my life story and then, gradually, part of my very soul. Peterson explains in Eat this Book, "Reading is an immense gift, but only if the words are assimilated, taken into the soul -- eaten, chewed, gnawed, received in unhurried delight." Peterson describes this ancient art of lectio divina, or spiritual reading, as "reading that enters our souls as food enters our stomachs, spreads through our blood, and becomes ...
love and wisdom." More than the books themselves, it is the skills and the desire to read in this way which comprise the essential gift we must give our students and ourselves.
But Paul examines the connection of great literature not to our moral selves, but to our spiritual selves.
What good literature can do and does do -- far greater than any importation of morality -- is touch the human soul.
It is certainly worthwhile dipping into these for reference purposes but don't allow them to become dominating.
Remember that communication and regular feedback, above all, are the keys to success. This is a clear and authoritative guide to essay essay, project and report writing at university level which we would strongly recommend.