Addiction to literature  

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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel

Don Quixote has read himself into madness by reading too many chivalric romances. The motif of descent into madness or despair by reading too much can also be found in Madame Bovary and to a lesser extent in Anna Karenina.

Contrary to today, were reading is seen as beneficial and television and the internet are the scapegoats of the cultural pessimists, in the early 20th century not everyone was convinced that reading was a good thing. "Let all schools be closed at once. The great mass of humanity should never learn to read and write," said D. H. Lawrence.

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