WHAT IS LITERATURE

Literature is one of the fine arts like music and painting. It is fundamentally, an Expression of life through the medium of language. Literature is composed of books that are of great human interest due to their subject matter and mode of presentation.

In Literature, form and the pleasure that form gives are of great importance. The writer is provoked by an urge for self-expression. Literature reflects an interest in the world of reality as well as imagination and our love of form and order. Matthew Arnold one of the prominent writers defined literature as a criticism of life.

We can find four distinct elements in all good Literature which are:

  1. The intellectual element
  2. The emotional element
  3. The element of imagination and fancy
  4. The element of composition and style or (The technical element)

Literary productions can be classified into five categories from the point of view of their subjects or themes:

  1. Literature of purely personal experience.
  2. Literature dealing with the common questions of life, death, Destiny, and God.
  3. Literature dealing with the social world order and its activities.
  4. Literature dealing with nature and man’s relationship with the external world.
  5. Literature deals with Literature and Art’s themselves.

How Literature came into existence:

The study of Literature begins with the reading of books which gradually leads to a familiarity with authors. Every great book has something fresh and original to say and it says this freshly and originally. As Plato says the foundation of all good and lasting work is entire sincerity to oneself and to the truth of things one perceives in life. The purpose of studying literature may be pleasure or acquirement of knowledge and insight or both. In any case, the Readers business is to enter into the spirit of the work and to penetrate the vital forces of the author’s personality.

Features of Literature:

Another important aspect of Literature is style. Literature uses language in various molds. The great writer modifies the language to his purposes and molds it according to his peculiarities. Thus the style of the author is the product of his personality; it is also a record of his artistic, spiritual and intellectual growth.
A proper study of Literature involves the study of its history, the biography of the author, and the ethos of the ages and society in which it is produced. Thus Literature becomes a supplement to the study of history. While history tells us about the externals of a people’s civilization, Literature gives us an insight into their mental, spiritual and moral condition.

Literature helps us to know more about the life of the people and the period of the time. It gives us an enormous study of the works and the mentality of the author and the author reflects the visions of the people. Thus, it expresses the emotional aspects which are locked inside the person and it provokes agony in the paper. However, Literature is a fine art that provides inner knowledge and enlightens people all over the world in different languages.

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