Value and Purpose of Literature Literature is expressed in varying ways, such as poetry, novels, history, biographies, and essays. Depending on which type of work you are reading, the purpose and interpretation is different as it is depending on the person that is reading it. The purpose of literature is to get a diverse set of people to read the same piece of work and comprehend it differently, but still have the same affect on them. The purpose also depends on the genre. History is a guide for the future; it helps us figure out future plans and to help us not make the same mistakes we did back then.
Poetry and novels are more of an artistic way to entertain people or to get how you truly feel onto paper and see if anyone else could relate. Biographies and essays are more of an informational bit written to persuade or inform the reader of an occurring problem or of a person who is significant in the work they have accomplished. The Red Badge of Courage, written by Stephen Crane, is a fictional novel talking about a soldier in the Civil War that ditches the war to save his self and then feels guilty and goes back to become one of the best soldiers in his regiment.
This novel was written clearly for entertaining the reader and for a little history lesson about who won the war. A Separate Peace, written by John Knowles, is also a fictional novel about a young man at a school readying him for war where he finds what he is capable of. The value of literature is measured on how much the reader enjoyed the book. Reading is a pleasing way to pass the time for some people and can in many ways affect the way you live and the way you think. The value a book can have on a reader is unlimited.
It can change the way people live with and influence each other, helps one understand the past and how the world has evolved, teaches a lesson that will inspire the reader to live a better life, and helps us asks questions related to the standards of a “good” life, but doesn’t always answer them. Literature is one way that humans can communicate their thoughts and feelings to one another. Though the genres, purposes, and interpretations may differ, it is a universal tool and usually affects the reader in more than one way.