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What points could be made in a speech about how literature can influence the way in...

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nishi4000 | Student, Grade 10 | eNotes Newbie

Posted March 12, 2012 at 4:14 PM via web

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What points could be made in a speech about how literature can influence the way in which we think about the world around us?

I'm writing a speech on the above topic, I need to analyse texts to support my statement and also write about how the text has challenged my perceptions of the people around me. As a Year 10 student, I'm finding it difficult to respond to this task, and do not expect any answerer to provide me my whole speech as I am an honourable student and do my work myself. I only need some points and tips that could support me throughout this assessment. Any help or tips would be kindly appreciated.

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Ashley Kannan | Middle School Teacher | (Level 3) Distinguished Educator

Posted March 12, 2012 at 6:19 PM (Answer #1)

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I think that one of the most basic points that can be made in this speech would be that some of the world's greatest examples of literature are the works that transform the way in which individuals view being in the world.  Literature that stands the test of time does so, for the most part, because of this transformative quality.  It is in this where literature influences the way in which we think about the world around us because we, as readers, begin to see the world differently once good literature has captured our moral or ethical imagination.  For example, the Classical Greek works in the writing of Sophocles and Homer possess this transformational quality.  In Antigone, the transformational quality is embedded in how the individual views the issue of justice.  The obedience to a moral sense of the just when it comes into collision with the legal sensibility helps to provide the framework in which individuals influence the way in which they see the world around them and their place within it.  In Homer's Iliad, the collision between equally desirable, but ultimately incompatible courses of action defines the fundamental precepts of tragedy and what it means to be in a tragic collision.  It is to this end in which individuals better understand the world and their place in it.  Good literature influences the way in which people view the world around them because of this transformational element.

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