A Slight Shift in Perspective

The “reframing” power of literature comes from the story’s not being exactly the same as the reader’s story. In fitting the two together, the reader has to shift his point of view and so moves out of what seemed like an immovable and rigid framework. In this way, reading breeds tolerance and sympathy for people and attitudes not seen like this before. Readers revise their view of their own problem by reading of those worse off than themselves. Readers learn to understand the other gender, other sexual orientations, the elderly and the poor. Only a slight shift in perspective is required to make a lot of things seem different” (p. 350).

Joseph Gold: Read for Your Life: Literature as a Life Support System