The Role of the Writer in Society

Topics: Charles Dickens, Novel, Victorian era Pages: 4 (1188 words) Published: April 23, 2013
Formative assignment: discuss the role of the writer in society, with reference to specific examples.

The ‘writer’s’ role is vital to society in many ways. From the newspapers that are written to be informative, to the poets that are taught for education, from the bible that millions follow on a daily basis to fictional novels for entertainment. On one hand, Literature is all around and can be extremely influential, informative and enlightening. On the other hand, literature can be dangerous and also a source of controversy. The aim of this essay is to explore some of the key writers that portray this.

Literature in itself takes on two main roles in society. The first is an active role. This could mean that the literature itself is inspirational and effective towards society. The second is a passive role. This meaning that the literature itself is there but not necessarily crucial to create a real impact on today’s civilisation. Either way, this only emphasises the fact that the writer’s role, whether passive or not is important.

The role of the active writer is extremely significant. A powerful example of this is that of William Shakespeare (1564-1616). The role that Shakespeare took on in society was ultimately very influential. The fact that his works are still studied in schools and colleges to this day, almost four hundred years after his death and that he is still thought of as one of the greatest poets and playwrights in history portrays the importance of his works. Shakespeare’s plays are still performed in theatres worldwide and his house still stands in Stratford-upon-Avon and is now considered a landmark.

There are many reasons as to why Shakespeare was so influential, one of which being his influence on the modern language. Many of the phrases that are still used to day were adapted from a number of Shakespeare’s plays. Another of these reasons is Shakespeare’s ability to write a dialogue. The depth and skill that Shakespeare was able to...
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