Summary Of Pearls Before Breakfast By Nicholas Carr

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In life, there are thousands of things vying for people’s attention. With all of these distractions, many people miss out on art, music, and many other aspects of culture. Though they are vastly different, Nicholas Carr’s “Is Google Making Us Stupid?” and Gene Weingarten’s “Pearls before Breakfast”, both address what we miss when we rush through life. “Pearls before Breakfast” is the story of Joshua Bell, a famous musician who assisted in a social experiment by the Washington Post. On a cold January morning, at the L’Enfant Plaza, Bell played classical pieces for nearly an hour. During that time, 1097 people walked through the station. About twenty people gave him some money, but walked on without listening; only six people…show more content…
In his essay, he writes “once I was a scuba diver in the sea of words. Now I zip along the surface like a guy on a Jet Ski” (Nicholas Carr 227). He also states that as the internet becomes our primary source of information, we are distracted, and it begins to affect our ability, or at least our willingness, to read books and long pieces. In his piece, Carr refers to a 5-year study in the UK, which found that people visiting sites "exhibited 'a form of skimming activity, ' hopping from one source or site to another, and rarely returning to any source they 'd already visited." Carr acknowledges that people read more because of the Web, but deplores that "our ability to interpret text, to make the rich mental connections that form when we read deeply and without distraction, remains largely disengaged." He states that the way we read on the internet is changing the way we think and making us less contemplative. Similarly, in “Pearls before Breakfast”, Weingarten notes that “the explosion in technology has perversely limited, not expanded, our exposure to new experiences.” We live in a time when technology can be used to replicate reality, augment reality, and create virtual reality. Technology obviously has its place, but at the same time, it can be potentially suffocating and suppressing. It is common knowledge that a significant number of people waste countless hours, forfeiting vocational and academic achievement due to digital distractions that have little or no lasting

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