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The Impossible Genre: Reading Comprehensive Literary History Research Paper

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Updated: Oct 30th, 2021


World literature comprises of all the arts made by different countries all over the world. It may include the American literature, African literature, Asian, and other countries which are actively participating in the literary arts of the world. The literature started way back from the beginning of when the people have begun to know how to read and write. Each person is capable of making his or her own literary art by just expressing the ideas that he or she might have in mind with the considerations of making sense more often than not.

Apparently, world literature is large compared to the world cinema and world music around the globe which requires a lot of artistic side of the people behind to be able to come out a masterpiece. Some compilations of the world literature have been frequently used to market in some places in the world. It has given its way to make an expansion when it comes to the interest in the art and to the values which basically inspires the artists to construct some writings for a particular theme or topic of their choice (Rothenberg et al., 1995).


The discussions about the One World of Literature primarily points out the things that are needed to be stressed out on the concern of the students about the importance of the literary works that they are reading whether it is productive enough to be a reference for the things that may be applied to the world today. It also stresses out the interests and being into the social culture of the origin of the literature occurring nowadays. This challenging compilations or collection of the world literature connects together the creative writing, imagination, poetry, as well as drama by the authors in the twentieth century all around the globe (Damrosch, 2003).

There has been a theatrical speeding up of the idea of globalisation and it made the world literature come into more complexities. Consequently, the people have thought of the issues about what kind of topics to be written or how things will be handled to bring into being a good and nice art. The idea of world literature can advantageously go on with to mean a separation of the plenum of writing.

The world literature has been in use to include almost all the literary works that flow beyond their culture of origin that could be on the transformation of the original language that was used. In a broader sense, world literature could take account of any work that has ever get in touch with beyond the origin or culture but however, there are warnings that center its attention on the concrete readers that make good sense. It is also said that a work may have an effectual life of literature when it has actively illustrated and depicted the origin or the characteristics of the culture that one has (Damrosch, 2003).

One good example of a productive literature that views the one world of literature since it is about the readings which would give its audience a profound idea of literature is the story about the Soldier’s Embrace by the author Nadine Gordimer. Citing a review for the literature of Gordimer, it is said that the writer Nadine Gordimer is spectacular when it comes to the art that the author is constructing.

There are no other authors who write as Gordimer does in the sense of the traditional African literature. Mostly, the people outside Africa bring unfamiliar expressions and inversely, the people inside Africa has also a lot of art to send to other countries. Gordimer as a writer is known as being a writer who wrote with the use of her environment esthetically. Thus, her culture does not fade into her comparisons; in the books of Gordimer, the comparisons vanish into Africa just like the people who explore and the missionaries as well. In the work of Gordimer, A Soldier’s Embrace, the author depicts and illustrates freedom in her art and drastically considers it as the major subject of her works.

The evidence to that is the attainment of power by the blacks from the authorities who dominate them in the government most especially. With that being said, they were able to dance and express themselves in the street along with the people who colonized them during that period and ironically, those people who specifically are soldiers were the villains on the scene before they attain their free life. While in the midst of the crowd who were satisfied at that moment, in the strength of mind of being independent, a woman gave her own expression of freedom through her own interpretations such that she kissed the soldiers in the cheek and did whatever things that symbolized freedom or liberty (Broyard, 1980).

The kiss of being independent gave significance to the story which has the value of being free from the hands of the people who colonized them. The white woman who kissed the soldiers in the celebration of the democracy and her husband were primarily the promoters of the celebration of the said independence. Actually they gathered all the white and black people combining together to an embrace and made this the recognition of the freedom.

But apparently the advertisement began to vanish and strip. The white cheek of the women was washed out and indeed some kind of a pimply while the black people showed a fresh scar which did not make them disappointed with each other and instead showed parity amongst them. The white woman realized that the black and white people should not have contradictions when it comes to freedom, rather the grey people do. The soldiers whom the white woman embraced got some stingy smell such as a dead body with the smell of a sweaty person. The celebration has made the people whoring and they were not sober as the revolt came to its acme (Broyard, 1980).

Most creations of Nadine Gordimer depict on the love of the contradicting culture that white and black people have. Gordimer tried to manifest the things which will bring elevation to the whole society. The works of Gordimer also have the things which will make the people think of being on their own identity and express their own self without any hesitations or be more enthusiasts to persevere their own perspectives.

The social structure and the system of government is the main emphasis of her art. it is blatant and can be seen easily as the author, Gordimer, tackles and describes the scenarios on her story the things that happen in reality in that period. A touch of patriotism that states her love for the country and its people with where she wants sovereignty is somehow an issue detected on the story. Not only that, structure of the government which is about being a democratic country prevails on her convictions as she expressed her ideas on the story on the character of the white woman.


The education of the world view on the one world of literature is actually about the things which will make the world go on its productive side as it contributes to the emergence of profound and useful materials that an audience or the readers will more likely to create connection with the people. Indeed, world literature comes in different variations, the literary arts will aim one thing to the world and that should be to make sense on the lives of each individual. People might view the culture and origin as an uninteresting topic but those themes actually drive the literature to its high-end value and become more sensitive to the readers but also to the critics (Johnstone, 1992).

In addition to that, the theories involved in the determination of whether a literary work has been a productive one is becoming more crucial to the target audience which possibly generates or aspire more writers to use their own style of expressing the values of their culture may be or the structure of the government where they are into.

Giving the viewpoints for the work cited in this paper, the center of the literary art made by Gordimer has been central to the ideas and issues about the government or social interactions with the approaches of the people that they were with at that time. But one world of literature could also be on other issues such as the religion or political insights of a particular writer and the artist may explore into different world views but of course with taking into account the substance of the work (Brown, 1992).


Brown, Marshall. quot;Contemplating the Theory of Literary History.quot; PMLA 107.1 (1992): 13-25.

Broyard, A., A Soldier’s Embrace. 1980. Web.

Damrosch, D. What Is World Literature?. Princeton: Princeton University Press, 2003.

Johnstone, Robert. quot;The Impossible Genre: Reading Comprehensive Literary History.quot; PMLA 107.1 (1992): 26-37.

Rothenberg, J. & Joris, P. (editors), Poems for the Millennium: a Global Anthology of Modern & Postmodern Poetry, Berkeley: University of California Press, two vols., 1995.

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IvyPanda. "The Impossible Genre: Reading Comprehensive Literary History." October 30, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/the-impossible-genre-reading-comprehensive-literary-history/.


IvyPanda. 2021. "The Impossible Genre: Reading Comprehensive Literary History." October 30, 2021. https://ivypanda.com/essays/the-impossible-genre-reading-comprehensive-literary-history/.


IvyPanda. (2021) 'The Impossible Genre: Reading Comprehensive Literary History'. 30 October.

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