Literature has always been an important aspect through time. Literature plays a significant role in our day to day lives too. From our daily interactions to our study of different events and occurrences through time. Just like art, it helps us escape from our unpleasant daily realities and also helps us interact with the world around us in a more liberal and open-minded way. It brings about the creative imagination of a person through written or spoken word, for instance, poetry, plays as well as fiction and non-fiction materials. Comedies and tragedies also form an important part of history because it elicits mixed reactions and emotions from different audiences. The books that are turned into movies bring out the true depiction of the themes, arguments, and ideas that are presented in the books. The themes form the basis of the argument for a particular subject (Johnson & Kress 2010). The visual forms of literature through movies and plays also play an integral part in presenting the ideologies that are written in books. The literature that was being and written in the early centuries resonated well with the audience because at that time more people were interested in producing rather than consuming literature (Tennenhouse 2007).
There are quite many genres in literature. When studying literature, we have to classify whatever pieces that we are dealing with. Literary genres may include drama, poems, fiction, satire, comedy, tragedy, and many more. One has to be aware of the genre that they are studying to understand and interpret it well. My favorite genre is drama. It entails the performance or narrative that is presented by acting. It is commonly performed in plays and performances typically in stages in theaters. The plays are written down in a dialogue form in which the performers or actors go through before performing under the guidance of a director. Drama fascinated me because it presents the real meaning and depiction of what has been written down in books in a more practical and realistic way. The audience gets to decipher the content of a play or drama more effectively. It becomes hard to appreciate drama by just reading what has been written in books, but you get to appreciate it more when you see what you have learned in action. Fiction is also an interesting genre because it seeks to engage truths and questions, consequently significant to an extensive range of humanity as a form of expression (Saricks 2001). However, poetry is my least favorite of all genres because being one of the oldest forms of literature; it can be challenging to a modern learner to grasp the content and the flow of most of the poetic pieces.
In these different genres of literature, there are a number of elements that are used to help the audience understand the content and intention of any piece of literature. The plot in literature refers to a series of events that are often connected to one another in order to form a systematic sequence. It refers to the events that are presented in a format that is structured that in turn introduces the setting, characters, as well as setting the tone. Setting as well provides the time frame in which particular events take place and at a particular location. Characterization involves the way the characters are presented by writers in a story. They create the central character in a particular story that is usually referred to like the protagonist and the one who opposes the main character who is commonly known as the antagonist. Symbolism is used to represent a different object more than itself. It makes the audience understand the deeper meaning of an individual concept by likening it to a similar object that the audience is more familiar with.
Whatever we learn in literature is reflected in our day to day lives and interactions. The pieces that we read or see in plays and other forms of literature provide a mirror for us to appreciate the struggles others go through. It also helps us to understand the different and diverse cultures and art all around the world. By reading and studying various forms of literature, we get to know and understand what the authors meant or were thinking. Some pieces represent the author’s authentic situations and predicaments, hence helping us to connect with them on a more personal level. The ideas and arguments presented by authors make us understand what they value by the themes they discuss and write about.
Saricks, J. (2001). The Readers' Advisory Guide to Genre Fiction. Chicago and London: American Library Association.
Tenennhouse, L. (2007). The Importance of Feeling English: American Literature and the English Diaspora 1750 – 1850. Princeton: Princeton University Press.
Johnson, D., Kress, G. (2010 June 9). Globalization, Literacy and Society: Redesigning Pedagogy and Assessment. Retrieved from http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09695940301697#.VrXLqeb_DIU