In this fascinating session, filmed at the Battle of Ideas Festival 2019 by WORLDbytes volunteers, award-winning novelists Elif Shafak and Tim Parks discuss the state of reading and writing in the twenty-first century. They explore questions such as: Why does reading matter? What is the purpose of reading? Why do we need fiction? Do we read to challenge our vision of the world or to confirm it? Is reading a skill, an art, or simply a passive experience? Tim Parks is a novelist, essayist, travel writer and translator; author, ‘Pen in Hand: reading, rereading and other mysteries’ and ‘In Extremis’ Elif Shafak is an award winning novelist, ’10 Minutes 38 Seconds in this Strange World’; political commentator The chair is Claire Fox director, Academy of Ideas; Brexit Party MEP; author, I STILL Find That Offensive!