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define essay in literature

Literature, most generically, is any body of written arabno.gq restrictively, literature refers to writing considered to be an art form or any single writing deemed to have artistic or intellectual value, often due to deploying language in ways that differ from ordinary usage. Essay definition is - an analytic or interpretative literary composition usually dealing with its subject from a limited or personal point of view. How to use essay in a sentence. Synonym Discussion of essay. What Is Literature Essay Words | 3 Pages. What is Literature? Poems, novels, and stories; these are some of the things that first came to my mind upon pondering on the question 'What is Literature?'. And just lately I have known that literature also includes songs, speeches, plays, and many others in written and spoken forms.


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Literaturemost generically, is any body of written works. More restrictively, literature refers to writing considered to be an art form or any single writing deemed to have artistic or intellectual value, often due to deploying language in ways that differ from ordinary usage. The concept has changed meaning over time to include texts that are spoken or sung oral literatureand non-written verbal art forms, define essay in literature.

Developments in print technology have allowed an ever-growing distribution and proliferation of written works, culminating in electronic literature. Literature is classified according to whether it is fiction or non-fictionand whether it is poetry or prose, define essay in literature.

It can be further distinguished according to major forms such as the novelshort story or drama ; and works are often categorized according to historical periods or their adherence to certain aesthetic features or expectations genre. Definitions of literature have varied over time: it is a "culturally relative definition". The value judgment definition of literature considers it to cover exclusively those writings that possess high quality or distinction, forming part of the so-called belles-lettres 'fine writing' tradition.

The formalist definition is that "literature" foregrounds define essay in literature effects; it is the "literariness" or "poetic" of literature that distinguishes it from ordinary speech or other kinds of writing e.

Literary genre is a mode of categorizing literature. A French term for "a literary type or class". The history of literature follows closely the development of civilization. When defined exclusively as written work, Ancient Egyptian literaturedefine essay in literature, [13] along with Sumerian literatureare considered the world's oldest literatures.

Different historical define essay in literature are reflected in literature. National and tribal sagas, accounts of the origin of the world and of customs, and myths which sometimes carry moral or spiritual messages predominate in the pre-urban eras.

The epics of Homerdating from the early to middle Iron ageand the great Indian epics of a slightly later period, have more evidence of deliberate literary authorship, surviving like the older myths through oral tradition for long periods before being written down. Literature in all its forms can be seen as written records, whether the literature itself be factual or fictional, it is still quite possible to decipher facts define essay in literature things like characters' actions and words or the authors' style of writing and the intent behind the words.

The plot is for more than just entertainment purposes; within it lies information about economics, psychology, science, religions, define essay in literature, politics, cultures, and social depth. Studying and analyzing literature becomes very important in terms of learning about human history. Literature provides insights about how society has evolved and about the societal norms during each of the different periods all throughout history.

For instance, postmodern authors argue that history and fiction both constitute systems of signification by which we make sense of the past. Literature helps us understand references made in define essay in literature modern literature because authors often reference mythology and other old religious texts to describe ancient civilizations such as the Hellenes and the Egyptians.

Authors often include historical moments in their works, like when Lord Byron talks about the Spanish and the French in "Childe Harold's Pilgrimage: Canto I" [25] and expresses his opinions through his character Childe Harold.

Through literature we are able to continuously uncover new information about history. It is easy to see how all academic fields have roots in literature.

Eventually everything was written down, from things like home remedies and cures for illness, or how to build shelter to traditions and religious practices.

From there people were able to study literature, improve on ideas, further our knowledge, and academic fields such as the medical field or trades could be started. In define essay in literature the same way as the literature that we study today continue to be updated as we [ who? As a more urban culture developed, academies provided a means of transmission for speculative and philosophical literature in early civilizations, define essay in literature, resulting in the prevalence of literature in Ancient ChinaAncient IndiaPersia and Ancient Greece and Rome.

Many works of earlier periods, even in narrative form, had a covert moral or didactic purpose, such as the Sanskrit Panchatantra or the Metamorphoses of Ovid, define essay in literature. Drama and satire also developed as urban culture provided a larger public audience, and later readership, for literary production.

Lyric poetry as opposed to epic poetry was often the speciality of courts and aristocratic circles, particularly in East Asia where songs were collected by the Chinese aristocracy as poems, the most notable being the Shijing or Book of Songs.

Over a long period, the poetry of popular pre-literate balladry and song interpenetrated and eventually influenced poetry in the literary medium.

In ancient China, early literature was primarily focused on philosophy, historiographymilitary scienceagriculture, and poetry. China, the origin of modern paper making and woodblock printingproduced the world's first print cultures.

The most important of these include the Classics of Confucianismof Daoismof Mohismdefine essay in literature, of Legalismas well as works of military science e. Sima Qian 's Records of the Grand Historian. Ancient Chinese literature had a heavy emphasis on historiography, with often very detailed court records. In ancient India, literature originated from stories that were originally orally transmitted.

Early genres included dramafablessutras and epic poetry, define essay in literature. The Vedas are among the oldest sacred texts. The Samhitas vedic collections date to roughly — BCE, and the "circum-Vedic" texts, as well as the redaction of the Samhitas, date to c. In ancient Greece, define essay in literature, the epics of Homerwho wrote the Iliad and the Odysseyand Hesiodwho wrote Works and Days and Theogonyare some of the earliest, and most influential, of Ancient Greek define essay in literature. Classical Greek genres included philosophy, poetrydefine essay in literature, historiography, comedies and dramas.

Plato and Aristotle authored philosophical texts that are the foundation of Western philosophySappho and Pindar were influential lyric poetsand Herodotus and Thucydides were early Greek historians. Although drama was popular in Ancient Greece, of the hundreds of tragedies written and performed during the classical ageonly a limited number of plays by three authors still exist: Aeschylus define essay in literature, Sophoclesand Euripides.

The plays of Aristophanes provide the only real examples of a genre of comic drama known as Old Comedythe earliest form of Greek Comedy, and are in fact used to define the genre. Roman histories and biographies anticipated the extensive mediaeval literature of lives of saints and miraculous chronicles, but the most characteristic form of the Middle Ages was the romancean adventurous and sometimes magical narrative with strong popular appeal.

Controversial, religious, define essay in literature, political and instructional literature proliferated during the Renaissance as a result of the invention of printing, while the mediaeval romance developed into a more character-based and psychological form of narrative, the novelof which early and important examples are the Chinese Monkey and the German Faust books.

In the Age of Reason philosophical tracts and speculations on history and human nature integrated literature with social and political developments. The inevitable reaction was the explosion of Romanticism in the later 18th century which reclaimed the imaginative and fantastical bias of old romances and folk-literature and asserted the primacy of individual experience and emotion. But as the 19th century went on, European fiction evolved towards realism and naturalismthe meticulous documentation of real life and social trends.

Much of the output of naturalism was implicitly polemical, and influenced social and political change, but 20th century fiction and drama moved back towards the subjective, emphasizing unconscious motivations and social and environmental pressures on the individual.

Writers such as ProustEliotJoyceKafka and Pirandello exemplify the trend of documenting internal rather than external realities. Genre fiction also showed it could question reality in its 20th century forms, in spite of its fixed formulas, through the enquiries of the skeptical detective and define essay in literature alternative realities of science fiction. The separation of "mainstream" and "genre" forms including journalism continued to blur during the period up to our own times.

William Burroughsin his early works, and Hunter S. Thompson expanded documentary reporting into strong define essay in literature statements after the second World Wardefine essay in literature, and post-modern critics have disparaged the idea of objective realism in general.

Theorists suggest that literature allows readers to access intimate emotional aspects of a person's character that would not be obvious otherwise. Mitchell, for example, explains how one author used young adult literature to describe a state of "wonder" she had experienced as a child.

For example, language learning uses literature because it articulates or contains culture, which is an element considered crucial in learning a language.

An example is the integration of subliminal messages in literary texts or the rewriting of traditional narratives to help readers address their problems or mold them into contemporary social messages, define essay in literature. Hogan also explains that the time and emotion which a person devotes to understanding a character's situation makes literature "ecological[ly] valid in the study of emotion".

Some psychologists regard define essay in literature as a valid research tool, because it allows them to discover new psychological ideas. Psychologist Maslow's "Third Force Psychology Theory" helps literary analysts to critically understand how characters reflect the culture and the history to which they belong. It also allows them to understand the author's intention and psychology.

It also suggests that neurological development hinders actualizing this and a person becomes estranged from his or her true self. Lawrence 's 'pristine unconscious' is a metaphor for the real self". Poetry is a form of literary art which uses the aesthetic qualities of language including music and rhythm to evoke meanings beyond a prose paraphrase. Prior to the 19th century, poetry was commonly understood define essay in literature be something set in metrical lines; accordingly, in a definition of poetry is "any kind of subject consisting of Rhythm or Verses".

Prose is a form of language that possesses ordinary syntax and natural speechrather than a regular metre ; in which regard, along with its presentation in sentences rather than lines, it differs from most poetry. Eliot suggested that while: "the distinction between verse and prose is clear, the distinction between poetry and prose is obscure". On the historical development of prose, Richard Graff notes that "[In the case of Ancient Greece ] recent scholarship has emphasized the fact that formal prose was a comparatively late development, an "invention" properly associated with the classical period ".

Philosophical, historical, journalistic, and scientific writings are traditionally ranked as literature. They offer some of the oldest prose writings in existence; novels and prose stories earned the names "fiction" to distinguish them from factual writing or nonfiction, which writers historically have crafted in prose. A long fictional prose narrative. In English, the term emerged from the Romance languages in the late 15th century, with the meaning of "news"; it came to indicate something new, without a distinction between fact or fiction.

Walter Scott defined it as "a fictitious narrative in prose or verse; the interest of which turns upon marvellous and uncommon incidents", whereas in the novel "the events are accommodated to the ordinary train of human events and the modern state of society". Although there are many historical prototypes, so-called "novels before the novel", [60] the modern novel form emerges late in cultural history—roughly during the eighteenth century.

In purely quantitative terms, the novella exists between the novel and short story; the publisher Melville House classifies it as "too short to be a novel, too long to be a short story".

Summarizing the variable define essay in literature of the novella, William Giraldi concludes "[it is a form] whose identity seems destined to be disputed into perpetuity". A dilemma in defining the define essay in literature story" as a literary form is how to, or whether one should, distinguish it from any short narrative; hence define essay in literature also has a contested origin, [71] variably suggested as the earliest short narratives e.

Edgar Allan Poeor the clearly modern short story writers e. Anton Chekhov, define essay in literature. An essay consists of a discussion of a topic from an author's personal point of view, exemplified by works by Michel de Montaigne or by Charles Lamb. As advances and specialization have made new scientific research inaccessible to most audiences, the "literary" nature of science writing has become less pronounced over the last two centuries. Now, science appears mostly in journals.

Scientific works of AristotleCopernicusand Newton still exhibit great value, define essay in literature, but since the science in them has largely become outdated, they no longer serve for scientific instruction. Yet, they remain too technical to sit well in most programs of literary study. Outside of " history of science " programs, students rarely read such works. Philosophy has become an increasingly academic discipline.

More of its practitioners lament this situation than occurs with the sciences; nonetheless most new philosophical work appears in define essay in literature journals. Major philosophers through history— Define essay in literatureAristotleSocratesAugustineDescartesKierkegaardNietzsche —have become as canonical as any writers.

Philosophical writing spans from humanistic prose to formal logicthe latter having become extremely technical to a degree similar to that of mathematics. A significant portion of historical writing ranks as literature, particularly the genre known as creative nonfictionas can a great define essay in literature of journalism, such as literary journalism.

However, these areas have become extremely large, and often have a primarily utilitarian purpose: to record data or convey immediate information. As a result, the writing in these fields often lacks a literary quality, although it often and in its better moments has that quality. Major "literary" historians include HerodotusThucydides and Procopiusall of whom count as canonical literary define essay in literature. Law offers more ambiguity.

 

Essay Examples and Definition - Literary Devices

 

define essay in literature

 

Essay on What Is Literature? - Since the 18th century, the definition of the concept "literature" has become a problematic and a controversial issue among various literary schools. What is literature. What are the qualities that distinguish a literary text from a non-literary one. Does literature have any particular function in society. An essay has been defined in a variety of ways. One definition is a "prose composition with a focused subject of discussion" or a "long, systematic discourse". It is difficult to define . Essay definition is - an analytic or interpretative literary composition usually dealing with its subject from a limited or personal point of view. How to use essay in a sentence. Synonym Discussion of essay.