English Literature

When someone wanders on by this, and hopefully someone who is studying english lit will, I hope that they will understand exactly what is going on. Poetry is nearly dead, the novel has been reformed into an incoherent personal statement, and aside from the set of Literature students of the world (and those unfortunate enough to be studying something else while they truly want to be a literature student) no one appears to have recognised this. Something is dreadfully wrong...
Much as I love my studies I surely cannot remain in a field that is dying quite quickly.
Has anyone else felt this?
emmainwales emmainwales
18-21, F
6 Responses Aug 20, 2007

I love literature regardless if it's 'dying' as you say it is.

I can't help but feel that if you think the field of literature is dying, there's something very wrong with your English department. How can poetry be 'dead'? Have you never read any Carol Ann Duffy? Pablo Neruda and Anna Akhmatova may be dead, but their poetry is far from irrelevant. The novel is and always has been far more than a personal statement. Have you never studied magical realism? Post-colonial literature? Try Angela Carter, Salman Rushdie, hell, Neil Gaiman. Don't make broad, bland and factually incorrect comments about a research area with hundreds of rich, complex and lively debates, because it's clear that your ob<x>jections come from your lack of experience, which I hope can be put down to laziness on the part of your teachers rather than a tendency in yourself to complain rather than explore.

Perhaps you should re-examine your words to try to figure out what you're really saying. Clarification may be all you need for an answer. If you want to read, you're free to read what you want. If you want to write, you're free to write what you want. Is there something else you're hankering after? Are you upset because it's hard to make a living as a writer? But many there have been and are who worked a day job and wrote on the side. Think of John Donne. So what's your point, exactly? Maybe you'll admit you don't really know. It's true people in the U.S. aren't all that interested in literature; over in England, France and Germany the interest in books is far greater. So what? When you were born did you receive a promise of literary excitement in your native land? It's sounds to me as if you're suffering from a case of inflated expectations. Frankly, looking at your prose style and quality of thought, I find nothing suggestive of actual literary talent. You might be better off composing, say, health warnings on bottles of beer and cigarettes.

People are slowly beginning to drift away from the canon. The idea of what good literature is has confused society by what is considered popular fiction. We all read and write for different reasons. I think literature is, in many ways, a personal opinion.

yeah, i feel the same way as you do<br />
especially in my country, where literature isn't being appreciated like in yours<br />
This year English department in my university has only 40 something students (compare to civil or management, 200 more students)<br />
pity, isn't it?

I think you can always make something of what you love, its up to you to make the subject go the way you think it should, even in a small way.. You might be able to write yourself or perhaps get into the position of running a course which could be influential, or producing television or radio programmes that put your case forwards to a wide audience. Its up to you to think big and do your best, if you love your subject you just have to be strategic about where you put that feeling. I know its too easy to say encouraging things to someone else while I can't get my own caeer to take place, perhaps you can tell me what to do?