Learning Life and Language from Literature

Learning Life and Language from Literature

Every student has his favorite subject in school. Unfortunately, every student has a subject that he would prefer to never have in the schedule. There are many reasons why students do not like, for instance, math: for some of them it seems too hard, some of them might think they won’t have a chance to apply it in future, and others just don’t like the teacher. However, every school subject is important to some extent because school provides us with knowledge that will need at some point in our life. One of the essential parts of any school program is literature classes. In the Eastern Europe literature is taught for ten years – this is how long the school program is in the countries like Russia, Ukraine, and Belarus. A lot of students complain that the course of literature is endless. Moreover, they consider it to be too complicated at times because for fourteen year old children it is extremely hard to analyze serious literary works like “Crime and Punishment” by Dostoyevsky or “The Red and the Black” by Stendhal. Some might agree or disagree, but what we know for sure is that studying literature is fantastic for a number of reasons.

• The story The first reason why we love literature in school is that we can actually have a lot of fun because some stories are very exciting. If you look at the list of books and authors that children learn in secondary and high school in Russia, you will be excited because a lot of books in this list are our favorite literary works. They are captivating, sometimes touching, sometimes even tragic, but we love them because they don’t leave us indifferent. There will no student who will find Pushkin’s “Eugene Onegin” or “The Captain’s Daughter” boring. There will be not a single person who will not sympathize with young and naïve Romeo and Juliette and will not admire the power of their beautiful love. Everybody enjoys reading “The Hound of the Baskervilles” by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle and looks forward to finally finding out who is guilty of the crime. Literature classes help students learn about the books they would probably not read without supervision and get amazed by the world masterpieces.

• The life All the great works of literature that have ever been created were written by wise talented people who knew life. Although many stories do not seem necessarily real, it does not mean they do not contain some life philosophy. When we read books, we learn a lot about human’s nature and people’s behavior. We analyze people’s actions and sometimes understand that we act the same way and make the same mistakes. Students should not think that the books they read are just somebody’s fantasy: a lot of them describe the authors’ personal experience and tell us about feelings and emotions of really great people. Students should appreciate that they have an opportunity to look deeply into a great author’s thoughts and life and live it together with them. Some day this knowledge might be very useful.

• The language A lot of people consider their written language to be unimportant, but well-written text is a sign of a literate person. Writing and speaking without mistakes is crucial for anybody who wants to get a position in a big company and needs to write an excellent resume and have a successful interview. Yes, every school provides students with a sufficient coursework in the native language, but this is not enough to acquire advanced written and spoken language skills. To improve their language people need to read a lot of good, classical books. If it is a book originally written in a foreign language, it has to be translated by an expert and be widely recognized. The more a person reads, the more naturally he/she absorbs the language. For many people it is easier to memorize things when they see them. Reading helps us memorize how words are spelled, how punctuation works, how sentence is structured, etc. Books are a great example of a beautiful, impeccable language, and reading them helps our language improve and become impeccable as well.

• The background information This is also a very interesting point. Sometimes books contain information about historical events that you have never been interested in. You may be reading a book because of a wonderful love story, but this love story happens during the American Civil War (“Gone with the Wind” is a great example). As a result, you collect the information about the Civil War in your storage and can use it later when you least expect it. You might also find descriptions of various musical instruments or conversations about famous philosophers in the books you read, and every single thing stays in your memory. You can even find a subject that will interest you a lot and become you hobby. Books have no value, they talk about things and places we can never see in our life, but we know they exist and we have dreams, hopes, and plans. With the help of the books we discover a whole new world of beauty and art, and this is what makes us go forward and reach our goals. When you are in school, you have perfect time for spending a couple of hours per day to read a book carefully and get amazed. We hope you will enjoy your literature classes a lot.

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