Why Literature Matters

Permanence and the Politics of Reputation

By Glenn C. Arbery

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Why Literature Matters

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Contemporary confusion over the role and importance of traditional literary texts invites us to reconsider why literature matters in the first place. Through an examination of the work of poets and novelists who have managed to garner honor—including those whose canonical status is assured, like Shakespeare, Homer, and Emily Dickinson—and those whose reputations are of more recent vintage and therefore more difficult to evaluate, such as Tom Wolfe, Seamus Heaney, and Toni Morrison, Glenn Arbery explores this question with elegant prose and subtle criticism. Arbery argues that the importance of literature can be traced to several fundamental factors, including the poetic mode of knowledge offered by literary form, the intrinsic pleasure experienced when "world becomes word," and the multiple, complex layers of reality—and their anagogical meaning—revealed by great literature.

Additional Information

Format Cloth
Pages 281
Publisher ISI Books
What They're Saying... N/A
ISBN 1882926595
ISBN13 9781882926596
Eligible for Readers Club Discount Yes

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