Listening with Others: A Reboot for Screen-weary Eyes
In many communities, social events that take place in public continue to be curtailed. Book groups and other media fans who enjoy the social aspects of sharing their enthusiasm (and critiques) have either moved online to video chatting platforms or on furlough. Many of us experience intensified screen time — for work, to keep as close as we can to family and friends, and to find out who’s saying what about our imminent future. All this has some yearning to enjoy an experience at the same time they know others are enjoying it while also giving screen-weary eyes a rest. Here’s a new — really an old — way to do all that.
AudioFile Magazine launched Audiobook Break last month. Since it’s delivered via podcast, you can catch up any time you like and on whatever podcast platform you use. It’s also available on Lit Hub Radio. The initial title that’s unfolding, in three half-hour episodes each week, is Charles Dickens’s own favorite novel, David Copperfield, with British actor Nicholas Bolton performing courtesy of Naxos AudioBooks. Dickens became the choice because hearing his novels chapter by chapter, across time and in multiple households, is how his contemporary readers experienced his stories. They first appeared in serialized form in magazines, and the installments were shared aloud by the best reader in the family, with everyone else listening together.