By Daily Mail Reporter
Published: 01:23 GMT, 2 March 2020 | Updated: 01:23 GMT, 2 March 2020
Ditching self-help books in favour of complex works of classic literature can help boost brain power and quality of life, research suggests.
People suffering from depression, chronic pain and even dementia are being urged to tackle books by the likes of Charles Dickens or Jane Austen to send ‘rocket boosters’ to the brain.
Professor Philip Davis, of the University of Liverpool, said that reading the classics ‘frees emotions and imagination’ and lets people feel ‘more alive’, potentially allowing relief from symptoms of illness.
Reading classic literature can help boost brain power and quality of life, research suggests. It 'frees emotions and imagination' and lets people feel 'more alive', says Professor Philip Davis, of the University of Liverpool
Self-help books and other similar works do not carry the same benefit because the process of reading them is too basic to excite the brain.
‘If you’re just scanning for information, you go fast, it’s very easy, it’s automatic,’ Professor Davis told the Sunday Times. ‘But when literature begins to do something more complicated than that, the brain begins to work. It gets excited, it gets emotional.’
His own book, Reading For Life, is based on work at Liverpool’s Centre for Research into