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What are the general classifications of literature?

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Quick Answer

The general categories of literature are non-fiction, poetry, prose, drama and media. These are usually called genres. Literature is broken down into genres to make it easier to identify and discuss.

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Poetry is often considered the oldest form of literature, because the rhyming technique used in poems would have been helpful in a time before written language. The main elements of poetry are rhythm, meter and imagery. Not all poems have to rhyme, and they are not required to be written in complete sentences. Poetry is often filled with emotion.

Prose is any type of literature that is not poetry. Prose is always written in complete sentences, and those sentences are put together to create paragraphs. A verbal form of prose is the folktale, which is created and passed down through generations. Sub-genres of prose include fables, fantasies, legends and myths.

The genre of non-fiction is almost always written as prose. Though it can be creative, non-fiction is most often used for educational reasons. Sometimes non-fiction tells a story, such as an autobiography. It can also be used for scientific papers.

Drama is a text that is meant to be performed. It can be read, but the sole purpose of the piece is performance. In modern society, drama is usually either a play or a movie script.

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Related Questions

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    What are the main divisions of literature?

    A:

    The main literary divisions are usually defined by the two central categories of prose and poetry. Both of these branches may be further broken down or stylized into subdivisions such as dramatic verse, prose drama or speech narratives.

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  • Q:

    What are the forms of non-prose?

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    In classical literary structure, the genres other than prose are poetry and drama. In modern literary structure, two additional genres have been added: nonfiction (arguably a form of prose) and media, which is primarily but not entirely non-prose.

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    What are the characteristics of Victorian literature?

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    The Victorian era in literature is marked by a shift in the attitude of poets from relaxed to realism-oriented, as well as a shift in popularity from poetry to novels. Novels were granted the title of an art form, and both poems and novels confronted social conflict.

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    How did the Quran influence literature and poetry?

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    The Quran's origins as an oral text in which recitation and intonation were of utmost importance, and its style of interweaving revelations from various periods into its sections, are its greatest influences on literature and poetry, according to the Encyclopaedia Britannica. In addition, because the Quran was written in Arabic, the Arabic language became the most important means of written expression in Islamic literature.

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