The Reflection Of Society: The Relationship Between Literature And Society

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There is little doubt that a link between literature and society exists. In fact, there are three theories that describe their relationship. The first hypothesizes that literature is a reflection of society [1]. In this theory, society affects literature. The writer’s experience is used as inspiration for his/her creations. The work may be a stylized retelling of an event or it may even be set in an alternate universe where events are based on true stories and ideas. These works are passed on from generation to generation and they continue to be a way of documenting the different trends and ideas that have come and gone. The second is that literature shapes society [1]. Different literary texts contain their own life lessons and morals. By reading these writings, children and adults alike learn them and thus may knowingly or unknowingly embody their ideologies. Literature provides alternate methods for learning since they are able to immerse readers in a world different from their own, which may provide some useful insight. The third theory implies that literature has social-control [1]. By presenting similar ideologies over and over again, literature can set what is viewed as normal, thus presenting how one is expected to act in society. All three of these concepts are seen in relation to the book “This Earth of Mankind” written by Pramoedya Ananta Toer. Literature reflects society Toer’s book, “This Earth of Mankind” is the first among a four-part series known as
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