The Importance Of Culture In Beowulf

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It is often assumed that literature is simply a book but it is any written piece of work. Culture is also defined loosely being the beliefs, social forms, and traits of a racial, religious, or social group. Literature is an important part in most cultures and culture is essential in almost all literary works. The two relate closing to one another as they influence and illuminate each other. Different cultures read books to help them understand who and what they came from. Literature can help inform people by sharing its history and possibly even change a culture by explaining a story or an event. The events or ideas occuring during the time a book was written impacts the story and the way people speak, and perform everyday tasks. An example of culture in literature is the novel Beowulf translated by J. R. R. Tolkien. The aspects of culture found in Beowulf are their social structure, honoring their dead, and male dominance.…show more content…
The kings were strong and brave warriors which shows the ideals of their culture. It has been established that “The Anglo-Saxon social structure consisted of tribal units led by chieftains ("kings," or "lords") who, theoretically at least, earned their respect from their warriors.” (Delahoyde). Leadership was not just passed down from generation to generation but they had to earn their spot by doing something honorable. The same principle can be found in Beowulf “Then Beo was king in that Danish castle. Shild’s son ruling as long as his father and as loved, a famous lord of men. And he in turn gave his people a son, the great Healfdane, a fierce fighter who led the Danes to the end of his long life and left them four children.” (Raffel and Frank, 2008, p.5). Although his son became a lord he still had to be a warrior. This idea shows what the anglo saxons value and what it requires to be the leader of their
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