1 December 2014
Introduction To Literature Essay
Is it Literature?
What is Literature? What is literature? To some there may not be a difference between these two questions posed, but in reality these two questions have totally different answers. One somewhat consistent difference between the two words Literature and literature is that Literature refers to a much more exclusive group of writing pieces than literature. The focus of this essay is to identify a couple pieces of Literature, not literature. Because of this fact I must give the qualifications for a piece to be considered Literature. Literature is as defined by Arthur Krystal in the article titled, “What is Literature?”. To give a quick summary of his definition may be helpful. Arthur Krystal has a very exclusive definition of what can be considered Literature. He writes that Literature is “a recorded of one human being’s sojourn on earth, proffered in verse or prose that artfully weaves together knowledge of the past with heightened awareness of the present in ever new verbal configurations. The rest isn’t silence, but it isn’t literature either.” Krystal has a very specific definition of what can be considered Literature. The piece must be lasting and enduring, in order to be considered Literature. To Krystal there is no such thing as bad Literature even if it is flawed because by his given definition anything considered Literature must be good Literature. Literature is exceptionally particular by definition. Now that I have given the definition of Literature with a capital ‘L,” I will identify if a couple pieces are Literature or not. The two pieces that I will be looking at are Ethan Frome
Edith Wharton and
The Tragedy of Othello, the Moor of Venice
by William Shakespeare. I may
ruin the incredible feeling of suspense the reader of this essay may have by saying that I would consider both pieces Literature based on my given definition of Literature. It would have been ideal to have an example of a piece that I would consider Literature and a piece that I would not consider Literature, but both pieces are quality pieces of capital “L” Literature, in my opinion. I would hope that a piece mentioned on the AP exam is good enough to be considered Literature and I would say the same for a piece that was assigned in an honors English class. Although this may be a good basis for my argument that these two pieces are in fact Literature with a capital “L,” it is not enough to rest on. Some analysis of the Literature may be necessary to help fully explain my case.
by Edith Wharton is a story of a man that settled for a life that he realized he was not happy with. He had appreciated his life because of the feeling of security it gave him at a time when he was in need of it. When he later realized his desires for a different life he halfheartedly goes for this new life while his progress is being impeded by his somewhat manipulative wife who fills the man with guilt. This eventually leads Frome to make some very questionable decisions that have a somewhat ironic result. One reason why this piece must be considered Literature is because of its efficient use of figurative language. With this language the author artfully displays the tone and some themes of the story. Wharton, in this book, uses a great amount of imagery, most often appealing to the sense of sight and touch. We are constantly reminded of the setting of the story. Specifically the weather is repeatedly described throughout this piece. We are given this image of completely white and freezing cold environment, then this new life, which consists of Frome leaving his wife to be with her more beautiful cousin Mattie, is
shown differently. The language used to describe Frome’s experiences with Mattie are of ...
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