Literature is works of arts that have existed for a very long time, since the time of our ancestors when they used to use stories and art to educate the young generation as well as passing their culture, religious beliefs, and skills. Even recently, different literary forms have been used by different individuals to pass important messages to the society, ranging from poems, novels, short stories, songs among other literary texts. They continue to play a very important role in the society, even with technological innovation. In this paper, we shall discuss whether the experience of reading literature has benefits to the readers.
Experience of reading literature has several benefits to the readers both academically, socially and spiritually, as discussed below:
Academic benefits: Tons of academic benefits arise with being a literature reader. Learning a language requires mastery of its literacy content including poems, short stories, and novels (Fraser-Thill). Mastery of work of art in a subject requires one to be highly familiar with the different literacy texts that are within that language. Reading also improves the ability of one to understand a given instruction and draw logical conclusions from specific occurrences. It is very useful especially in intuitive reasoning as well as logical reasoning (Fraser-Thill). Reading is important in every subject from science to philosophy to history. Literature requires one to read and understand the different contexts within that particular text. The same applies to history, science, and philosophy.
Cognitive development: one of the key benefits of reading literature is the improvement in cognitive abilities. Exposure to high-quality literature gradually expands someone capacity for reasoning and making of sound judgment. It improves reasoning in all dimensions because literature writers often offer better ways of an understanding phenomenon that is extraordinary (Fraser-Thill). Information that is provided by experts from different fields are highly accepted by consumers of literature and it helps develop very important senses among such individuals. The dilemmas that characters portrayed in literature, and how they are presented to solve the challenges they face in their lives, help readers to improve their reasoning based on a given context. Cognitive reasoning is very critical especially in everyday living and development of an individual (Gemert). It helps one achieve maturity, within a very short period, and improve their situational analyses and decision-making strategies, as well as communication.
Improved communication: Reading literature exposes an individual to different sets of vocabulary, as well as sentence structures that are acceptable in the spoken language. It improves one's ability to communicate with others well and thus passing a message in a clear and understandable manner (Seiter). In the world where communication plays a central role in all transactions that are social, political, religious and economical, communication is very important in passing the right information at the right time and to the right audience (Gemert). It is critical to observe that communication is important especially in addressing societal issues such as moral, social justice and liberty. Communication becomes well developed when people embrace literature that is, reading good quality literature and embracing it, to benefit them linguistically.
Historical understanding: a majority of quality works of literature is often drawn from historical developments and the way people have handles difficult situations over time. Considering that literature is mainly based on social occurrences, we cannot refute that such texts are meant to improve our knowledge on historical occurrences and how people during that period handled situations, such as social injustice (Seiter). For instance, poems written by Maya Angelou are based on historical occurrences especially during the black supremacy in the United States, as in the case of the poem "Black Bird". Such texts help us to think critically about the historical development of the United States and how people have been fighting to gain freedom and justice.
Social development: Literature is written by individuals who have been brought up in different cultures and they often narrate occurrences based on a given cultural and religious practices within that context (Seiter). For instance, western literature is based on culturally acceptable ways in the western society; the same applies to the Chinese, Indian, Russian, African among other cultures. Reading literature helps one to accept and appreciate diversity among different cultures as well as learning how to interact with them in the social and religious levels (Seiter). Culture is often emphasized and they form major themes in the literary texts as well as poems. Culture forms a crucial part of our society and it is critical that people learn about the different aspects of culture, thus improving their social skills (Gemert).
Emotional: Reading literature, improves the emotional makeup of an individual in different ways. For instance, it stirs empathy; which in turn creates the understanding of a given situation (Gemert). When the reader puts themselves in the shoes of the characters in the play or a poem, or a story, it helps them activate their imagination that is directed towards a better understanding of a given context within a particular setting. In an era where social pressures continue to put people to all kinds of stress including depression, requires that one disengages for a while from stressful situations (Gemert). Reading literature is very critical in relieving stress as it distracts one from always thinking about their work and social life. Reading fiction is perfect for finding rest among most readers. Reading also helps one to enter into a relaxing and meditative mood that is critical for sleep and rest. Reading literature has also been proven to induce pleasure among people, and thus helping them lead happier lives than non-readers (Gemert). Therefore, literature is crucial for ensuring a balanced emotional wellbeing among individuals.
Fraser-Thill, Rebecca. "Reading Literature Benefits Tweens' Development In A Variety Of Ways." Verywell Family. N.p., 2018. Web. 6 Sept. 2018.
Gemert, Lisa. "8 Benefits Of Reading Classic Literature - Gifted Guru." Gifted Guru. N.p., 2018. Web. 6 Sept. 2018.
Seiter, Courtney Seiter. "The Surprising Power Of Reading Fiction: 9 Ways It Make Us Happier And More Creative." Open. N.p., 2018. Web. 6 Sept. 2018.
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