European Literature Part 2: Significant Authors and their works Ancient Greek Literature Introduction literature of the Greek-speaking peoples from about the 8th century BC to the present. This literature developed as a national expression with little outside influence, until it had a formative effect upon all succeeding European literature. Homer the name traditionally assigned to the author of the Iliad and the Odyssey, the two major epics that have survived from Greek antiquity. Nothing is known of Homer as an individual, and in fact it is a matter of controversy whether a single person can be said to have created both the Iliad and the Odyssey. Plato (428?-347 BC) Greek philosopher, one of the most creative and influential thinkers in Western philosophy one of the most famous philosophers of ancient Greece, was the first to use the term philosophy, which means ―love of knowledge.‖ The Republic One of the most influential works of philosophy and political theory, and Plato's best known work. Content Definition of justice- the action of doing what one ought to do, or of doing what one does best, according to one's class within society. Theory of universals- myth of the cave (The shadowy environment of the cave symbolizes for Plato the physical world of appearances. Escape into the sun-filled setting outside the cave symbolizes the transition to the real world, the world of full and perfect being, the world of Forms, which is the proper object of knowledge. The dialectical forms of government (Oligarchy, Tyranny, Democracy, Timocracy) Aesop (620?-560?BC) ancient Greek writer of fables, who is supposed to have been a freed slave from Thrace His name became attached to a collection of beast fables long transmitted through oral tradition. The various collections that go under the rubric "Aesop's Fables" are still taught as moral lessons and used as subjects for various entertainments, especially children's plays and cartoons. Many stories included in Aesop's Fables, such as The Fox and the Grapes (from which the idiom "sour grapes" was derived), The Tortoise and the Hare, The North Wind and the Sun and The Boy Who Cried Wolf, are well-known throughout the world. The Fox and the Grapes the tale of a hungry fox who finds some ripe grapes on a vine but cannot reach them. The fox, frustrated, leaves the grapes and declares them to be sour anyway. The moral associated with this tale is that things beyond our reach are often despised. Greek Tragedian Aeschylus (525?-456 BC) Father of tragedy He excelled in presenting supermen, in depicting Gods, Titans and heroes He is called the theological poet because his plays had great spiritual and religious fervor; he present he presents the original dignity and greatness of nature and of mankind. Greatest work: Prometheus, trilogy Oresteia (Agamemnon, Cheophori, Eumenidies) Sophocles (496?-406? BC) One of the three great tragic dramatists of ancient Greece. Sophocles continues to use the chorus in most of his plays, but it serves primarily to suggest the larger moral and religious dilemmas posed by human actions. Sophocles composed more than 120 plays. Of these, 7 complete tragedies and fragments of 80 or 90 others are preserved. The seven surviving plays are Antigone, Oedipus Rex or Oedipus Tyrannus (Oedipus the King), Electra, Ajax, Trachiniae (Maidens of Trachis), Philoctetes, and Oedipus at Colonus. Greek Tragedian Euripedes (480?-406? BC) He is called a modern playwright- wrote merely serious play He portrayed the Gods as powerful but also capricious and silly, while humans cannot understand the deities and it is useless to try to do so; it is certainly silly to worship them because they are not just. The theme of tragedy is the sufferings and disasters that befall human beings. Our own lives and those of others are wrecked by ignorance and foolishness, uncontrolled passions and emotions, and greed, ambition, and cruelty. Tragedies of Euripides for which we know the date of the first production is Alcestis (438 BC), Medea (431 BC), Hippolytus (428 BC), TrojanWomen (415 BC), Helen (412 BC), Orestes (408 BC), and Iphigenia in Aulis and Bacchae (both produced posthumously, 405 BC). Aristophanes (448?-385 BC) Master of Greek Comedy He was first and foremost a satirist The intention of his plays is to attack the faults and weaknesses of society Works: The Birds, The Frogs and The Wasp Ancient Roman Literature Significant Authors and their writings Ancient Roman Literature the body of written works in the Latin language, remains an enduring legacy of the culture of ancient Rome. The Romans produced many works of poetry, comedy, tragedy, satire, history, and rhetoric, drawing heavily on the traditions of other cultures and particularly on the more matured literary tradition of Greece. Virgil (70-19 BC) Greatest writer that Rome produced He began as a lyric poet of great passion and melody The greatest epic in Rome is the Aeneid, wherein the subject matter sets way back in the Greek legendary age Horace (65-8 BC) Quintus Horatius Flaccus Roman lyric poet and satirist, whose works are masterpieces of Latin literature of the Golden Age. Horace produced works that fall into four categories: satires, epodes, odes, and epistles. Cicero (106-43 BC) Marcus Tullius Cicero Master orator and tireless writer on rhetoric and philosophy In his writings Cicero created a rich prose style that has exercised a pervasive influence on all the literary languages of Europe. His writing covers numerous subjects of intellectual interest, and he greatly enriched the vocabulary of his own language as well as those of the modern European tongues. Nearly all of his philosophical works were borrowed from Greek sources and, apart from their intrinsic merit, are of great value in preserving much of Greek philosophy that might otherwise have remained unknown Spanish Literature Significant Author and their writings Spanish Literature literature of Spain from about AD 1000 until the present, written in the Spanish language. Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra (1547-1616), Spanish writer, considered by many to be the greatest Spanish author, whose novel Don Quixote (Part I, 1605; Part II, 1615) is regarded as one of the masterpieces of world literature. Don Quixote Don Quixote The Ingenious Hidalgo Don Quixote of La Mancha most influential work of literature to emerge from the Spanish Golden Age and perhaps the entire Spanish literary canon Don Quixote describes the adventures of an idealistic Spanish nobleman who, as a result of reading many tales of chivalry, comes to believe that he is a knight who must combat the world's injustices Originally intended as a satire on medieval tales of chivalry. The completed work, however, presents a rich picture of Spanish life and contains many philosophical insights. Don Quixote's quest has been seen as an allegory of the eternal human quest for goodness and truth in the face of insurmountable obstacles. His idealism seems to be madness in a world that sometimes views heroism and love as forms of insanity, and this has led many readers to consider Don Quixote a tragedy despite its satirical style and many comical episodes. Italian Literature Italian Literature literature written in the Italian language from about the 13th century to the present. Dante Alighieri (1265-1321) Italian poet, and one of the supreme figures of world literature, who was admired for the depth of his spiritual vision and for the range of his intellectual accomplishment. Greatly influencing poetry and the arts, and summarizing political, scientific, and philosophical thought of the time in his epic masterpiece, The Divine Comedy Divine Comedy Central epic poem of Italian literature, and is seen as one of the greatest works of world literature. composed of over 14,000 lines that are divided into three canticas (Ital. pl. cantiche) — Inferno (Hell), Purgatorio (Purgatory), and Paradiso (Paradise) — each consisting of 33 cantos In each of these three realms the poet meets with mythological, historical, and contemporary personages. Each character is symbolic of a particular fault or virtue, either religious or political; and the punishment or rewards meted out to the characters further illustrate the larger meaning of their actions in the universal scheme. Dante is guided through hell and purgatory by Virgil, who is, to Dante, the symbol of reason. The woman Dante loved, Beatrice, whom he regards as both a manifestation and an instrument of the divine will, is his guide through paradise. Divine Comedy- Inferno Virgil guides Dante through the nine circles of Hell. The circles are concentric, representing a gradual increase in wickedness, and culminating at the center of the earth, where Satan is held in bondage. Each circle's sinners are punished in a fashion fitting their crimes: each sinner is afflicted for all of eternity by the chief sin he committed. People who sinned but prayed for forgiveness before their deaths are found in Purgatory – where they labor to be free of their sins – not in Hell. Circle of hell First circle-limbo Second circle- Lust Third Circle- Glutton Fourth Circle- avaricious or miserly Fifth circle- wrathful and sloth Sixth circle- Heretics Seventh circle- Violent Eighth Circle- Fraudulent Ninth circle- Betrayers/traitors Giovanni Boccaccio (1313-75) Italian writer and humanist, one of the great authors of all time. Boccaccio’s most important work is Il Decamerone (Ten Days’ Work), which was begun in 1348 and completed in 1353; it was first translated into English, as The Decameron, in 1620. It consist of 100 stories masterfully organized to give impression of a total view of society Theme- show the complexity of human beings and their helplessness before the terrible force of nature Francesco Petrarch (1304-1374) Italian poet and humanist, who is considered the first modern poet. His perfection of the sonnet form later influenced such English poets as Geoffrey Chaucer, William Shakespeare, and Edmund Spenser. Petrarchan Sonnet/Italian Sonnet The Petrarchan sonnet consists of an octave, or eight-line stanza, and a sestet, or six-line stanza. The octave has two quatrains, rhyming a b b a, a b b a, but avoiding a couplet; the first quatrain presents the theme, the second develops it. The sestet is built on two or three different rhymes, arranged c d e c d e, or c d c d c d, or c d e d c e; the first three lines exemplify or reflect on the theme, and the last three lines bring the whole poem to a unified close Sample of Italian sonnet When I consider how my light is spent (a) Ere half my days, in this dark world and wide, (b) And that one talent which is death to hide, (b) Lodged with me useless, though my soul more bent (a) To serve therewith my Maker, and present (a) My true account, lest he returning chide; (b) "Doth God exact day-labor, light denied?" (b) I fondly ask; but Patience to prevent (a) That murmur, soon replies, "God doth not need (c) Either man's work or his own gifts; who best (d) Bear his mild yoke, they serve him best. His state (e) Is Kingly. Thousands at his bidding speed (c) And post o'er land and ocean without rest; (d) They also serve who only stand and wait." (e) Niccolò Machiavelli (1469-1527) Italian historian, statesman, and political philosopher, whose amoral, but influential writings on statecraft have turned his name into a synonym for cunning and duplicity. The Prince a political treatise by the Florentine public servant and political theorist Niccolò Machiavelli. He describes the method by which a prince can acquire and maintain political power. This study, which has often been regarded as a defense of the despotism and tyranny of such rulers as Cesare Borgia, is based on Machiavelli's belief that a ruler is not bound by traditional ethical norms. In his view, a prince should be concerned only with power and be bound only by rules that would lead to success in political actions. French Literature French Literature French Literature, the literature of France, from the mid- 800s until the present. French literature is considered one of the richest and most varied national literatures, noted especially for its examination of human society and the individual’s place within society. Alexander Dumas (1802-1870) French novelist and playwright of the romantic period, known as Dumas père. Dumas, the most widely read of all French writers, is best remembered for his historical novels The Three Musketeers (1844; trans. 1846) and The Count of Monte-Cristo (1844; trans. 1846). Antoine de Saint Exupery (1900-1944) Antoine Marie Jean-Baptiste Roger de Saint-Exupéry French writer and aviator Saint-Exupéry also was an enthusiastic aviator who wrote about his experiences in several novels. He joined the French air force in 1921 and became a commercial pilot in 1926. The Little Prince Best known for his children’s classic, The Little Prince (1943), which has been translated into more than 100 languages. The Little Prince makes several profound and idealistic points about life and human nature. Saint- Exupéry tells of meeting a young prince in the middle of the Sahara. Victor Hugo (1802-1885) French poet, novelist, and playwright, whose voluminous works provided the single greatest impetus to the Romantic Movement. He brought to his plays and novels to common man- the labourer or peasants- and made them humane and sympathetic, a figure of noble action Les Miserable novel that vividly describes and condemns the social injustice of 19th-century The novel principally focuses on the struggles of the main character, ex- convict Jean Valjean, as he seeks to redeem himself from his past mistakes. It also provides social commentary by examining the impact of Valjean's actions: and it examines the nature of good, evil, and the law, in a sweeping story that expounds upon the history of France, architecture of Paris, politics, moral philosophy, antimonarchism, justice, religion, and the types and nature of romantic and familial love. Michel de Montaigne (1533-92) French writer, who introduced the essay as a literary form. His essays, which range over a wide variety of topics, are characterized by a discursive style, a lively conversational tone, and the use of numerous quotations from classical writers. Essays-The book is a collection of a large number of short subjective treatments of various topics published in 1580. Montaigne's stated goal is to describe man, and especially himself, with utter frankness. Germanic Literature Germanic Literature literature written in the German language from the 8th century to the present, and including the works of German, Austrian, and Swiss authors. Anne Frank (1929-1945) German-Jewish diarist, known for the diary she wrote while hiding from anti- Jewish persecution in Amsterdam, Netherlands, during World War II (1939- 1945). Her diary describes with wisdom and humor the two arduous years she spent in seclusion before her tragic death at the age of 15. Since it was first published in 1947, her diary has appeared in more than 50 languages. Diary of a Young Girl a book based on the excerpts from a diary written by Anne Frank while she was in hiding for two years with her family during the Nazi occupation of The Netherlands. The family was apprehended in 1944 and Anne Frank ultimately died of typhus in the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp. After the war, the diary was retrieved by Anne's father, Otto Frank. English Literature English Literature literature produced in England, from the introduction of Old English by the Anglo-Saxons in the 5th century to the present. The works of those Irish and Scottish authors who are closely identified with English life and letters are also considered part of English literature. Beowulf An Anglo-Saxon epic poem, the most important work of Old English literature Although the date of the poem is unknown, the earliest surviving manuscript is believed to date from the late 10th century. On the basis of this text, Beowulf is generally considered to be the work of an anonymous 8th-century Anglian poet who fused Scandinavian history and pagan mythology with Christian elements. The poem consists of 3182 lines, each line with four accents marked by alliteration and divided into two parts by a caesura Summary of Beowulf The poem tells of a hero, a Scandinavian prince named Beowulf, who rids the Danes of the monster Grendel, half man and half fiend, and Grendel's mother, who comes that evening to avenge Grendel's death. Fifty years later Beowulf, now king of his native land, fights a dragon who has devastated his people. Both Beowulf and the dragon are mortally wounded in the fight. The poem ends with Beowulf's funeral as his mourners chant his epitaph. Geoffrey Chaucer (1343?-1400) one of the greatest English poets, whose masterpiece, The Canterbury Tales, was one of the most important influences on the development of English literature. Increasing the prestige of English as a literary language, through his contributions to early English literature The Canterbury Tales The Tales is a collection of stories set within a framing story of a pilgrimage to Canterbury Cathedral, the shrine of Saint Thomas à Becket. composed of more than 18,000 lines of poetry, is made up of separate blocks of one or more tales with links introducing and joining stories within a block. 24 of the projected 124 tales were completed, shows Chaucer's absolute mastery of the storyteller’s art It portrays a wide range of humanity and present a vivid and detailed picture of England St. Augustine of Hippo (354-430) greatest of the Latin Fathers and one of the most eminent Western Doctors of the Church. one of the most important figures in the development of Western Christianity. Augustine developed many of his doctrines while attempting to resolve theological conflicts with Donatism and Pelagianism, two heretical Christian movements. Confession The work outlines Augustine's sinful youth and his conversion to Christianity. first Western autobiography ever written, and was an influential model for Christian writers throughout the following 1000 years of the Middle Ages. John Milton (1608-1674) English poet, whose rich, dense verse was a powerful influence on succeeding English poets, and whose prose was devoted to the defense of civil and religious liberty. Paradise Lost Milton’s masterpiece and one of the greatest poems in world literature. It is written in 12 books that vividly tell the story of Satan’s rebellion against God and his tempting of Adam and Eve to eat the forbidden fruit of the tree of knowledge. It is richly ornamented with references to classical mythology and literature, echoes of the Bible, figures of speech, metrical devices, allegorical representations, puns, and concealed rhymes William Shakespeare (1564-1616) English playwright and poet, recognized in much of the world as the greatest of all dramatists. Hundreds of editions of his plays have been published, including translations in all major languages. Shakespeare’s play Exploring elemental themes of power, justice, love, and death in his tragedies, comedies, histories, romances. Creating realistic stage characters whose appeal comes in their truly human motives, actions, and flaws. also notable for their use of soliloquies, in which a character makes a speech to him- or herself so the audience can understand the character's inner motivations and conflict Adding innumerable phrases and quotations to the English language Classification of Shakespeare’s play Comedies- The Comedy of Error, Two Gentlemen of Verona, A Midsummer Night’s dream, Merchant of Venice Tragedies- Hamlet, Romeo and Juliet Julius Caesar, Macbeth Romance- The Tempest, Pericle, Prince of Tyre, Cymbelin Histories- King John, Richard II, Richard III Problem play- All’s Well that ends well, Troilus and Cressida, Measure for Measure Shakespearean Sonnets He wrote 154 sonnets, first published in 1609 The rhyme scheme of the sonnets is abab, cdcd, efef, gg. A theme is developed and elaborated in the quatrains, and a concluding thought is presented in the couplet. The first 126 sonnets are apparently addressed to a handsome young nobleman, presumably the author’s patron. The next 28 sonnets are written to a ―dark lady,‖ whom the poet seemingly cannot resist. His sonnets are a sensational story of love, lust and disloyalty that may not have been inspired by his own experience Sample Shakespearean Sonnet Let me not to the marriage of true minds (a) Admit impediments, love is not love (b) Which alters when it alteration finds, (a) Or bends with the remover to remove. (b) O no, it is an ever fixed mark (c) That looks on tempests and is never shaken; (d) It is the star to every wand'ring bark, (c) Whose worth's unknown although his height be taken. (d) Love's not time's fool, though rosy lips and cheeks (e) Within his bending sickle's compass come, (f) Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks, (e) But bears it out even to the edge of doom: (f) If this be error and upon me proved, (g) I never writ, nor no man ever loved. (g) Sonnet 118 Sir Thomas More (1478-1535) English statesman and writer, known for his religious stance against King Henry VIII that cost him his life. Sir Thomas More was known for his intelligence and devotion to the Catholic church. That devotion put him at odds with his one-time friend, King Henry VIII, who had More beheaded for refusing to sanction, as lord chancellor, Henry’s divorce from Catherine of Aragón. Utopia a satirical account of life on the fictitious island of Utopia. On this island the interests of the individual are subordinate to those of society at large, all people must do some work, universal education and religious toleration are practiced, and all land is owned in common. These conditions are contrasted with those of English society, to the substantial disadvantage of the latter Charles Dickens(1812-1870) the best-known and, to many people, the greatest English novelist of the 19th century. A moralist, satirist, and social reformer, Dickens crafted complex plots and striking characters that capture the panorama of English society. Dickens’s novels criticize the injustices of his time, especially the brutal treatment of the poor in a society sharply divided by differences of wealth. Dickens’s novels rank among the funniest and most gripping ever written, among the most passionate and persuasive on the topic of social justice, and among the most psychologically telling and insightful works of fiction. A Tale of Two Cities A historical novel by Charles Dickens, set in London and Paris before and during the French Revolution. It depicts the plight of the French proletariat under the brutal oppression of the French aristocracy in the years leading up to the revolution, and the corresponding savage brutality demonstrated by the revolutionaries toward the former aristocrats in the early years of the revolution. Jane Austen (1775-1817) English novelist, noted for her witty studies of early- 19th-century English society. Austen portrayed the quiet, day-to-day life of members of the upper middle class. Her works combine romantic comedy with social satire and psychological insight. Exploring themes of marriage, family, and everyday country life in witty novels with strong heroines Pride and Prejudice Austen’s first undoubted masterpiece The book focuses on the Bennet family and the search of the Bennet daughters for suitable husbands. Austen illuminates the topic of husband hunting and marriage in an acquisitive society and shows most of its aspects and consequences—comic, trivial, sensual, opportunistic, desperate, and hopeless Lewis Carroll (1832-98) Charles Lutwidge Dodgson English author, mathematician, and logician, best known for his creation of the immortal fantasy Alice's Adventures in Wonderland. Alice in Wonderland It tells the story of a girl named Alice who falls down a rabbit-hole into a fantasy world populated by peculiar and anthropomorphic creatures. It is considered to be one of the most characteristic examples of the genre of literary nonsense, and its narrative course and structure has been enormously influential, mainly in the fantasy genre. Francis Bacon (1561-1626) English philosopher and statesman, one of the pioneers of modern scientific thought. Introduced essay in England His works established and popularized an inductive methodology for scientific inquiry, often called the Baconian method or simply, the scientific method. Scandinavian Literature Scandinavian Literature the literature in the languages of the Nordic countries of Northern Europe. The Nordic countries include Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway (including Svalbard), Sweden and associated autonomous territories (Åland, Faroe Islands and Greenland).The majority of these nations and regions use North Germanic languages. Henrik Ibsen (1828-1906) Well-constructed plays dealing realistically with psychological and social problems won him recognition as the father of modern drama. Drama became a serious and realistic presentation of the psychological and social problems of the people He attacked the hypocrisy of social conventions and selfishness and self- satisfaction of people Hans Christian Anderson (1805-1875) Danish author, whose fairy tales have been translated into 150 languages and have inspired plays, ballets, films, and works of sculpture and painting. Among his best-known stories are "The Steadfast Tin Soldier", "The Snow Queen", "The Little Mermaid", "Thumbelina", "The Little Match Girl", "The Ugly Duckling" and "The Red Shoes". Andersen's tales of fantasy, were innovative in their handling of sophisticated feelings and ideas and in their use of the vocabulary and constructions of spoken language. Emperor’s New Clothes The fable tells the story of a king who believed only wise people could see the clothes made for him by a crafty tailor. He paraded nude down the road of his kingdom, wearing his ―new‖ clothes.