BOOK REVIEW: Teaching Nineteenth-Century Literature: An Essential Guide for Secondary Teachers

Document Type : Book Review


Van YYU, Faculty of Education, Department of Foreing Language Education


Although it is generally defined as the verbal or written transfer of feelings and thoughts, there is no unanimity on a frame regarding the process, content, method, feature, meaning and importance of literature (Eagleton 1996, Hernadi 1978, Meyer 1997). In his definition of literature, Eagleton says that “literature we are told is vitally engaged with the living situations of men and women, it is concrete rather than abstract, displays life in all its rich variousness” (1996, p. 171). Literature has always been, and will continue to be, one of the universal denominators of human experience through which people may identify and communicate with one another, regardless of their professions, life ambitions, geographical and cultural regions, or personal situations. It enables one to dream, to fictionalize the future through combining the past with the current time. Literature also provides us with insights into the past eras, the origins of our society and our current environment. In a nut shell, literature helps us to appreciate the richness of humanity's inheritance in ethnic and cultural diversity, because, it is a powerful tool for delving into the culture of a specific period, socioeconomic class, or social group.