Literature and National Consciousness is our topic of Essay today. It is called “সাহিত্য ও জাতীয় সচেতনতা” in bengali. This essay is a common topic in many competitive exams in Bangladesh. Today we will create a sample or essay for students. We suggest not memorising the essay but rather taking an idea and writing the essay later on by own language and style.
[ 21st & 23rd BCS ]
Literature and National Consciousness Essay
Although the word ‘literature’ broadly includes just about everything that is written, we use it more specifically to mean written compositions that tell stories, dramatize situations, express emotions and analyse and advocate ideas. Most literary works during recorded history were designed only for the printed page and we read them silently. Works composed before history began, however, were originally oral and fortunately, many of these have been preserved and now exist as printed texts. Also, a great deal of literature is designed to be spoken and acted out by live actors (plays).
In a word, literature is an artistic presentation of life. Through imagination and figurative language are the core of literature, it is not far from reality. The world of imagination and sense perception coupled with the reality of life make up the golden realm of literature.
Types of Literature:
Literature may be classified into four categories or genres: (1) prose fiction (2) poetry (3) drama (4) non-fiction prose.
⇒ The genres of imaginative literature have much in common but they also have distinguishing characteristics. Prose fiction or narrative fiction includes novels, short stories, myths, parables, romances and epics. While fiction, like all imaginative literature, may introduce true historical details, it is not real history, for its purpose is primarily to interest, divert, stimulate, and instruct. The essence of fiction is narration, the relating or recounting of a sequence of events or actions.
⇒ Poetry is more economical than prose fiction in the use of words and it relies heavily on imagery, figurative language and sound.
⇒ Drama is literature designed to be performed by actors. It presents fictional events as if they were happening in the present, to be witnessed by an audience. It also deals with different social problems and makes us conscious of consequences and remedies.
⇒ Imaginative literature differs from non-fictional prose, the fourth genre, which consists of news reports, feature articles, themes, editorials, textbooks, historical and biographical works and the like, all of which describe or interpret facts and present judgements and opinions. A major goal of non-fiction prose is truth in reporting and logic in reasoning.
Why do we study Literature:
Whatever the form, literature has many. things to offer, almost as many things as there are people. In fact, people often cannot explain why they enjoy reading, for goals and ideals are not easily articulated. There are, however areas of general agreement about some of the things that the systematic and extensive reading of literature can do.
Literature helps us grow, both personally and intellectually, it provides an objective base for knowledge and understanding; it links us with the broader cultural, philosophic, and religious world of which we are apart. It enables us to recognize human dreams and struggles in different places and times that we would never otherwise know. It helps us develop mature sensibility and compassion for the condition of all living things-human, animals and vegetables.
Literature gives us knowledge and perception to appreciate the beauty of order and arrangement, just as a well-structured song or a beautifully painted canvas can. It provides the comparative basis from which we can see worthiness in the aims of all people, and it, therefore, helps us to see beauty in the world around us. It exercises our emotions through interest, concern, tension, excitement, hope, fear, regret, laughter and sympathy.
Through cumulative experience in reading, literature shapes goals and values by clarifying our own both positively through acceptance of the admirable in human beings, and negatively through the rejection of the sinister. It helps us shape our judgements through the comparison of the good and the bad. Both in our everyday activities and in the decisions we make as individuals and as citizens, it enables us to develop a perspective on events occurring locally and globally, and thereby it gives us understanding and control.
It encourages us to assist creative, talented people who need recognition and support. It is one of the shaping influences of life. It makes us human and conscious of our identity.
Literature and consciousness:
Literature is not composed in a vacuum. Every literary piece is set in a particular social, political and cultural setting. The history of different periods or ages has influenced the literature of those periods. For example, by reading the literature of the Elizabethan period we can learn a lot of things about that period. Different traditional aspects of the period such as Renaissance spirit (rebirth of art and learning), colonial expansion, growing consciousness among people are found in the works of this age. But everything is not directly stated; we have to be critical and infer the implied meaning of the works.
If we read the literature of the Victorian Period, we will have a clear understanding of social, political psychological reality pervading the age. The age is marked by Victorian compromise’ which refers to a reconciliation between two different realities of society. Lord Alfred Tennyson, the representative poet of the Victorian Age, depicts this Victorian Period in his poetry, we find a compromise between capitalists and the labourers and steps taken to ameliorate the living condition of the down-trodden. We also find a compromise between the agnosticism of science and theism of Christianity. So, the reading of literature can make us fully conscious of the contemporary ongoings and help us develop psychologically.
The reading of Bengali literature can similarly make us conscious about the culture of the Bangaless, the social and the political habits of different times. If we read the literature written on our liberation war, we have a faithful picture of our nine-month-long bloody struggle and our victory. The Reality of war is so vividly portrayed that we cannot but be moved to tears.
So, the reading of our literature-poetry, novels, drama, editorials, prose etc, can make create national consciousness among us. We can make our decision based on that awareness. Our young generation can visualize the stark, blood-curdling atrocities of 1971. through their reading of literature. History can be pure facts but it is not as vivid and emotion-raising as a play or a novel can be’ because literature is special in the use of language.
In brief, to study literature is to know about the world, to study literature means to communicate with the great minds of the world. A superior kind of understanding and holistic consciousness emerge out of the reading of world literature. Regular communication with current literature certainly creates national consciousness among people, for literature is embedded on reality.
- Essay Writing – Mass Literacy Movement in Bangladesh [ বাংলাদেশে গণসাক্ষরতা আন্দোলন, 24th BCS]
- MARTYRED INTELLECTUALS DAY 2020 : Literature and national consciousness