If there were no literature, society would have no link with the past, in fact, literature of any historical period contains evidence and valuable information about how people really lived in various times in history.
Literature is so vital to the development of individuals in society that without it, I believe that young people would be ill prepared for their future lives as working individuals.
School, reading, especially works of literature, history, help develop the mind. It is not so important that a student remember every word that he or she has read, but develop and grow from the process. Learning, reading, analyzing literature, writing, develop an individuals ability to think, rationalize, strategize and problem solve.
When my students tell me that college is a waste of time that they don't want to go to school anymore, I remind them that learning never stops, in school or out. Learning is a continuous process that must be engaged in so that an individual, young or old, can remain relevant to his time period, to his life.
Life without literature would be a barren existence, if you like to think in dystopian terms, a good book to read is The Road by Cormac McCarthy. It offers a unique and chilling perspective on life.