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what is it that literature is unable to provide?





baboosaa
Casanova said " i lived my life as a free man and i traveled in the way where the wind pushed me."
If you read this then it simply provide us how he lived his life then we continue to start the book until it's finished.No body of us is satisfied about a writers description about the senario and people. If a reader reads a book and the author of the book is continuing to add pages to the book the i think the reader will keep on reading it to fulfill his dissatisfaction. Next thing is literature does not have any thing that isnon livingWhat ever is there is alive in some way or another.
SonLight
baboosaa,

I think I understand what you're trying to say. Let me give you my take on it.

Good literature tries to present the reality of a situation, including sights, sounds, and thoughts. It is impossible to do so completely, so the better the writing is, the more it leaves you wanting a clearer picture.

Some would argue that a movie can make you feel more like you're really there, but others would say that vivid written description can be more effective, because the reader can use his/her imagination to produce more striking images.
deanhills
To me good literature inspires. And when it does, it becomes completely alive to me. Like the book by Joe Simpson on "Touching the Void" and his description of how he basically jumped crawled with a totally useless and broken leg through rough terrain, no food and no water, to the base camp. When everyone had though he had died, after falling down an enormous mountain crevice during a mountain climbing experience that turned into an enormous disaster for him and his mountain climbing buddie and very good friend, Simon Yates. For me Joe Simpson's description of his experience was truly "alive". Actually all his books so far have been "alive" to me, witty, interesting, and motivating. He is an excellent narrator, and what makes it great is that they are all true stories.

A list of his books can be found at this URL:
http://www.touchingthevoid.co.uk/books.asp
patricia39
For me, I can say that the literature is good if I can see the four elements such as the characterization, plot, theme and setting. Then take each one to see how the author develops each one of them. Good literature has challenging vocabulary and poetic word choices that are woven together to create beautiful pictures of people, places and conflicts.
Bluedoll
I am not sure what this could mean? Is it that literature is not providing something for us, like wind in the willow trees. That enchanting sound could very well change the writers course indeed. I think it is not only a case of value but one of mystery and intrigue that keeps us reading. Not to say that value is not in the willows insistence to affect but that merely writers seem to be able to have the gift to hook us like little fish in a pond. We thirst for knowledge or excitement and follow the writer to see where else the whispering willows will take us? Did anyone catch that?
fate_merchant
baboosaa wrote:
the reader will keep on reading it to fulfill his dissatisfaction


This topic prompt is excellent in that it has no single or substantive answer. It serves rather to provoke thoughtful ideas and discussion, so here follow some of my first impressions.

It's always important to be clear about terms, and whatever we mean when we use the word "literature" will tend to vary considerably from one person to another.

There are those who argue for a conservative canon of representative works who would like to exclude a broader interpretation of why other works should be considered as important. This argument is generally tied to education and thereby control over the standard curriculum. In the past, writing by people of color and women were almost entirely excluded, and this had to do with the fact that the academy was dominated by old white men. Remnants of this ridiculous attitude continue to persist, but for the most part it's become a relic.

Nevertheless, the new and improved canon still generally adheres to a kind of conservatism based on ease of categorization according to style and thus genre. Those writers who seriously launch raids on conventions are frequently dismissed and marginalized as experimental, inconsistent, difficult or simply too damn controversial.

But enough with trying to pin down whatever literature is or is not; respectful disagreement fertilizes the field where new growth thereby thrives.

The word "novel" means new; the word "essay" means try or attempt. Both genres according suggest that a radical compositional approach is not only acceptable but necessary.

As for what might fulfill my dissatisfactions? I admire writing which seeks to intervene and destabilize prevailing stagnancies at every level. Each of us has a duty, I believe, to leave this world and planet in better condition than we receive it, and writing which refocuses our understanding and attention can be a fine thing indeed.

But this idea too introduces dangers relating to dogmatism and demagoguery. Dogmatists and demagogues also try to change the world, but they do so by bullying and using propagandistic techniques, and even some of this could at times be considered as literature. Edward L. Bernays Propaganda published in 1928 is an excellent but chilling book and has been followed religiously by politicians and corporate advertisers now for years. It is indeed literature and very worth reading for anyone who would like to understand the theoretical foundations of how the United States operates today.

To return more specifically to the topic, it's also important to realize the ways in which we are shaped by language. Language invariably shapes our perceptions, and people who speak different languages therefore perceive the world differently, and often extremely so. Many words do not even have approximate equivalents in other languages. Although such words are often ordinary and evocative in the mother tongue, they come across as weird, exotic, and incomprehensible in another. They cannot be translated even when referring to something apparent, and this means that some things can be perceived by the senses of speakers in one language which cannot by speakers of another, though it's true that this opens up a possibility for learning.

In this case, it's also true that the loss of local seemingly inconsequential indigenous languages impact everybody. On a simple level, perceptual richness decreases, but on a more profound level, this language loss represents a kind of collective brain death. For starters, check out this LIST OF LANGUAGES, EXTINCT, ENDANGERED & SECURE for instance:

http://www.ubu.com/ethno/discourses/rothenberg_endangered.html

I could go on and on about this stuff, but that's plenty for now. Thanks very much to baboosa for the opportunity to do some exploring. As I said before, it's a great prompt.
baboosaa
Literature is never known precisely from it's date of birth. It might have existed in the form of paintings in the walls in caves, it might have existed in the fairy tales we used to hear and now let our children to hear. But in language that's spoken not written there is a feed back mechanism that works it's part unconsciously and we never know what actually happen. ie. we find so many versions of same story. How do they pop up out of nowhere and even then you hear?
Alright it's because we are making small changes in story so that the one who is listening to it can understand easily.

Then what's the problem with literature?continue...
baboosaa
The main problem with our literature is that it's existence came into reality without our direct participation. It all became the power of a person's ability to imagine and express that imagination into reality. I know that's how you are going for noble prize. But where is that feed back mechanism here? Or some one is suggestion that one should make changes only the book or the expression in written form is out and in hand of reader.

Where is that change making process so that reader can get what the laureate is saying? Is it the way by which literature is providing what we say : The view through the writer's eye?
Are we really all understanding what it's saying?
It's just to think because past can't be change unless you change the present.
Fooky
I think I agree with baboosaa.

It lacks interaction.

It also lacks finality. If I read (or dream) I found a chest of gold. The gold doesn't really "do" what I need gold to do. That is to say, it's useless.
Ankhanu
There is a lot that reading doesn't provide us... but that's what makes it satisfying, moreso than media that offer more (such as audio, video, or interactive video). When you're reading, you have to work... you have to use your imagination to fill in gaps, you have to interpret visuals, sound, scents, overall scenes. No one quite interprets these things the same way... the experience is more personal.

Of course, a lazy mind will not strive to build the full scene from only a few words, and much of the enjoyment is lost. But, they can watch TV, I suppose Wink

In the sense that I think you're trying to get at, Baboossa, all forms of storytelling need to engage the audience, else the audience will go elsewhere. There are several mechanisms by which this engagement, this thirst for content can be achieved; all of which are employed within literature: They make you care about the situation/characters, they leave you with tantalizingly little detail or clues, enough to catch your attention and incite curiosity to pull you along, they build a lush, detailed situation/environment/character, etc., which the audience can relate to, etc. No matter what, the end result is to engage the audience's interest and/or curiosity, and the need to find resolution. A well written story will bring the reader through some highs and lows and an ultimate resolution... some threads may be left open to leave you wondering, but, the main lines are generally resolved, unless there is a serial quality to the story.

Regarding your feedback mechanism bit, I really don't understand that. Very few story telling media allow for audience participation/feedback. Movies, television, radio, recorded music, most live music, most theatre... all of these are artists presenting the audience with something they have no control over. The lack of audience feedback is nearly universal in expressive media, save a select few interactive media.
lovescience
A sentence leads to another question. The point is the reader has to notice the question. If the reader likes to find out the answer for the question, the chance is that he or she would continue the journey the writer set for him or her.

It's always his or her choice to go on the journey with characters or writer of a book. He or she may not like a part of the book or may enjoy a part of the book a lot. Unlike the characters in the book, who have to go through all, or the writer has finished the book, reader has his or her choice to stop or continue the reading of the book.
Radar
I've encountered people who like having unanswered questions. Who like the lack of finality and the possibility for imagination.

I agree with the thoughts that reading is interactive insofar as the characters are essentially being acted out by your mind. Your thoughts are providing the emotion and depth for the words on the page.
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