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Is Literature Useless Fluff?

Some people see reading as just another form of entertainment or a way to pass the time—it’s nice to read if you have the time or if you don’t have anything better to do, like watching television, but reading itself is not an important activity. It’s true, of course, that reading can be simply a form of entertainment if, for example, someone is reading trashy novels, but it can also be a very important activity. No Christian would dispute the necessity of reading the Bible, the most important book of all. Other books, as long as they are good books, can also play a beneficial and significant role in people’s lives.

Reformed Christians understand that the Bible applies to every area of life. This would include, then, the humanities such as the fine arts and literature. It’s easy to see such things as “airy-fairy concerns,” trivial compared to day-to-day necessities such as earning a living. But this view does not do justice to the role that literature actually fulfills in society.