'What happened to essential books?' - you just got old, mate

Another terrible, ill informed piece in the Guardian today about the state of modern literacy:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/booksblog/2010/oct/22/essential-books

I'm not even sure where Rick Gekoski is getting these tired opinions from, as he cites no studies or surveys of the students he claims are no longer reading as a homogenous group. In fact, this seems to be his biggest problem - that people now are reading widely and not as a homegenous group of middle-class intelligentsia.

Secondly, his list of books that are essential reading (many of which I have, in fact, read) are nearly all from the fifties and sixties. Now. For those of us born in the eighties, well, maybe we have our own, different, canon? Heresy, I know.