What is the purpose of Literature? Has the purpose been fulfilled? Are we using it the right way?
This has to do with the relation between the writer, the message he wants to deliver , the reader and how he takes it and makes it of his own.
I could define Literature as the art expressed with words, words based on a language, which is a way of communication. This is where it comesTHE question… What is the author really trying to tell us? For instance, in Chinua Achebe´s Things Fall Apart , although the topic of the book is the Igbo´s way of life, that is not just a story about a tribe or about a man´s life. This is the point where we must me able to read into the words and ideas of the author, What is he trying to make me see?
Chinua Achebe says “art is , and always was,at the service of man…” So it is a tool , a powerful tool to avoid making the same mistakes, that shows us what is wrong for us to regain control of our lives and to put them back to the right path, to open our eyes and confront ourselves, What have we done in our lives? . This is why I ask, “Has the purpose been fulfilled? Are we using (literature) the right way?” or have we only been wastingour time sitting and repeating in our minds pretty words? I´ll answer that; if you read about a civilization where you can´t wait for your parents to die for you to inherit what they have done , where you must fight for your own things and to become a real man, and you read all this and you continue to be a lazy guy(i´ll call you a guy because a man fight to be better than what we he is, and you´redefinitely not it) then the purpose is not fulfilled.
We can just say after reading Things Fall Apart that it is a pretty novel, that it is great the way Igbos lived, how they follow the rules and how they accepted the consequences of their acts, how they support each other, the power of the family union, oh yeah! That´s great! That´s perfect! But Chinua Achebe didnt choose English to writethis book just to tell a good story and sell many copies and become rich, He did it to show us that it can be done the right way. To put the example, that no matter things may appear to be hopeless, no matter the kind of father we have and the mistakes he did, we can stand up, raise our heads and with valor fight to become the best. And it was all thought ,even the language, because English is anInternational language so it could go around the World and touch many lives, giving the chance to our society to be better.
From Vargas Llosa, “Literatura es fuego”, for starters thank good we have writers with passion, that have the ability to transmit it in words. Starting with the title, he gives hope and answer to many things, how amazing isn´t it? Is like the most accurate definition,“Literature is fire” fire can be so many things, it can be shelter for those who feel the cold loneliness, it could be the destruction of something to rebuild it, to start again but doing it right, it could be the passion in the words of someone that has passed through a lot to become what he is now. That is literature, that´s the mission of literature, to make us tremble, to make us fear the future if wedont change our present learning of our past. We must feel the warmth of the fire, meaning that there is hope, we must use its power of destruction, to tear apart what has been erroneously made, and with its passion rebuild and make the things as they should be.
This is literature, a weapon, a tool, a guide, a counselor, with many ways, with many authors, with so many topics and so many storiesthat have been told and are going to be, literature talks to us. There will be literature, screaming that things are still wrong, and the topic will change until we change our way of living, our way of doing things, our way of solving our problems, and when we do that, then only then literature will talk about the heroes who made the difference, authors will immortalize us, the generation who...
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