is a term that does not have a universally accepted definition, but which has variably included all written work; writing that possesses literary merit; and language that foregrounds literariness, as opposed to ordinary language
the term derives from Latin literatura/litteratura
"writing formed with letters", although some definitions include spoken or sung texts
. Literature can be classified according to whether it is fiction
, and whether it is poetry
; it can be further distinguished according to major forms such as the novel
, short story
; and works are often categorised according to historical periods, or according to their adherence to certain aesthetic
features or expectations (genre
Literature may consist of texts based on factual information (journalistic or non-fiction), a category that may also include polemical works, biographies, and reflective essays, or it may consist of texts based on imagination (such as fiction, poetry, or drama). Literature written in poetry emphasizes the aesthetic and rhythmic qualities of language—such as sound, symbolism, and metre—to evoke meanings in addition to, or in place of, ordinary meanings, while literature written in prose applies ordinary grammatical structure and the natural flow of speech. Literature can also be classified according to historical periods, genres, and political influences. While the concept of genre has broadened over the centuries, in general, a genre consists of artistic works that fall within a certain central theme; examples of genre include romance, mystery, crime, fantasy, erotica, and adventure, among others.
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is a novella
by Margaret Atwood
. It was published in 2005 as part of the first set of books in the Canongate Myth Series
where contemporary authors rewrite ancient myths
. In The Penelopiad
reminisces on the events during the Odyssey
, life in Hades
, and her relationships with her parents. A chorus
of the twelve maids, whom Odysseus believed were disloyal and whom Telemachus
hanged, interrupt Penelope's narrative to express their view on events. The maids' interludes use a new genre each time, including a jump-rope rhyme
, a lament
, an idyll
, a ballad
, a lecture, a court trial and several types of songs.
The novella's central themes include the effects of story-telling perspectives, double standards between the sexes and the classes, and the fairness of justice. Atwood had previously used characters and storylines from Greek mythology in fiction such as her novel The Robber Bride, short story The Elysium Lifestyle Mansions and poems "Circe: Mud Poems" and "Helen of Troy Does Counter Dancing" but used Robert Graves' The Greek Myths and E. V. Rieu and D. C. H. Rieu's version of the Odyssey to prepare for this novella.
, English: Lady Murasaki) (c. 978 – c. 1014 or 1025) was a Japanese novelist
at the Imperial court
during the Heian period
. Murasaki Shikibu is a nickname; her real name is unknown, but she may have been Fujiwara Takako.
Murasaki wrote The Diary of Lady Murasaki, a volume of poetry, and The Tale of Genji. It is uncertain when she began to write The Tale of Genji, but it was probably while she in her mid to late twenties. In about 1005, Murasaki was invited to serve as a lady-in-waiting to Empress Shōshi at the Imperial court, probably because of her reputation as a writer. She continued to write during her service, adding scenes from court life to her work. Within a decade of its completion, Genji was distributed throughout the provinces; within a century it was recognized as a classic of Japanese literature and had become a subject of scholarly criticism. Early in the 20th century her work was translated; a six-volume English translation was completed in 1933. Scholars continue to recognize the importance of her work, which reflects Heian court society at its peak. Since the 13th century her works have been illustrated by Japanese artists and well-known ukiyo-e woodblock masters.
||When in 1892 I settled in Macao, a small island near the mouth of the Canton river, to practise medicine, I little dreamt that in four years time I should find myself a prisoner in the Chinese Legation in London, and the unwitting cause of a political sensation which culminated in the active interference of the British Government to procure my release. It was in that year however, and at Macao, that my first acquaintance was made with political life; and there began the part of my career which has been the means of bringing my name so prominently before the British people.
|— Sun Yat-sen, Kidnapped in London
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Template:/box-header 18 November
- 1865 - Mark Twain's story The Celebrated Jumping Frog of Calaveras County is published in the New York Saturday Press.
- 1874 - Clarence Day, American author born
- 1889 - William Allingham, Irish author died
- 1906 - Klaus Mann, German writer born
- 1922 - Marcel Proust, French novelist died
- 1926 - George Bernard Shaw refuses to accept the money for his Nobel Prize, saying, "I can forgive Alfred Nobel for inventing dynamite, but only a fiend in human form could have invented the Nobel Prize."
- 1939 - Margaret Atwood, Canadian writer (Surfacing, The Handmaid's Tale) born
- 1941 - Émile Nelligan, Quebec poet died
- 1946 - Alan Dean Foster, American author born
- 1952 - Paul Eluard, French poet died
- 1957 - Seán Mac Falls, Irish-born poet born
- 1966 - Jorge Camacho, Spanish poet born
- 1985 - Calvin and Hobbes, a comic strip by Bill Watterson, is first published.
- 1999 - Paul Bowles, American novelist died
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