American Literature and Society

Literature is a very powerful tool that is used to make a huge impact on society or in someones perspective. Literature comes in different forms and each literature form fits in a certain category or role to help understand the true meaning of it. From playwrights to short stories, each one has moral lesson, a message or a reflection of the author. I have witnessed the power of literature several times. Literature has moved teens to better being; it has motivated unfortunate people to fame, used as an educational process of teaching and most of all, entertainment. Back in the day, plays were on of the most famous forms of entertainment. Without television and radio present, plays served as a substitute to entertain certain groups of people like the royal family or just for the whole public. This was one way of making money by the actors and the authors that wrote the play. Also present during those times were the poem recitals. This is similar to a play but fewer people are present in the stage or sometimes solo performance. Today, Literature is still being used as a form of entertainment and educational intentions. Hollywood made a lot of money by revising the great masterpieces of famous authors such as Rome and Juliet by William Shakespeare. Also, they made movies out of hundreds of literary works for educational purposes and better understanding of the literature piece. Each form of literature has its own style. The style determines how it influences the audience to absorb the true meaning and moral of the story or poem. William Shakespeare and Benjamin Franklin were truly persuasive while Washington Irving and Edgar Allan Poe mixed mystery and adventure to their works. The style touches the readers which really makes a good relationship from the reader to the authors literary masterpieces.

Being a foreigner to this country, I have viewed American Society in a different way. There are a lot of factors that changed my perspective to the American society and of them is the literature I have studied during the process of having English as on of my major subjects. I can strongly say that American society is very much different than the environment I used to live. There may be similarities but there are few. American society tends to change a lot of times, its culture slowly evolves the American society to a whole different level. American society is full freedom. There are a lot of things that I could do here that I couldnt do in my homeland. Freedom was one of the things that I really noticed. I thought that this was a pretty good opportunity for me that I could live in a country like this. Knowing that freedom is abundant here, I thought that life here is easy. The more I stayed in America, the more things I experience in life that helped me reveal the reality of the true American society. Literature help me realize how the people think, and react to certain things in life.
Stories, dramas and poems are the ones that help me realize how American authors use these forms of literature to speak out to the public. The authors also want to share their experiences to the readers who never experience the same lifestyle as they did. The deep meanings of these stories and poems sometimes give me a descriptive meaning of how American society is sometimes harsh. One good example of this is the story of The Crucible by Arthur Miller. That was a good reflection of an old American society progressing to the present. I seriously thought that the whole witchcraft trials were very lame but now, I think that it really relates to the great discrimination that is happening in our society. The Crucible is a great reflection of discrimination of certain groups of people of todays society. In the story Crucible, those who are accused of performing witchcrafts or carrying the name of a witch will be put into trial. The consequences are really cruel if the suspects were proven guilty. Death was one of the punishments feared by these who are accused of witchcraft. Without advance technology able to prove or show strong evidence that the suspects were witches, the Salem witch trial relied ion witnesses. The life of the accused lies in the hands of the choice of the witness; its either they tell the truth or not regarding the prosecution of the accused witch. The story also emphasizes on how the people in the village randomly picks who to accuse as a witch without reasonable evidence to accuse them. This story really altered my thought of todays American society because of the past and present events. The terrorism that is present today, made most Americans very aware to foreigners that migrate to America. At this point it made me really think that America is selfish and mean about us foreigners. Its just the thought on how these authors are able to send out the message to society really made the huge difference in my perspective.
Society in every state is a blessing, but Government, even in its best state, is a necessary evil; in its worst state, an intolerable one; these are words form the author Thomas Paine. Published in 1776, Common Sense was used to challenge the British government and the royal monarchy. The simple language that Paine used to speak to the people of America was the first work to openly ask for independence from Great Britain. I believe that this literature gave more depth to my thought regarding American society. I believe that Thomas Paine is one of the most respectable and great role models for the American People. The way he express his words are really meaningful and the way presents his simplicity made things very understandable. This really amplified my thoughts about Americas freedom. Authors like these really push their limits to pursue freedom. With this in mind, my perspective to America is that they ill always do whatever they can to protect their freedom. Freedom isnt free but I think that American is willing to make few sacrifices and give in the cost of it. Presently, America is in a war to free countries of terrorism and oppression. From young teens to old veterans, all of these people have the heart and pride they carry to right for their land. This is something I admire and look up to the American People.
I really think that Literature is important to our daily life. It may serve as a lesson told by an anonymous person, a famous author or a story retold by someone you know. It is critical that you take the full meaning of the intended target of the literature to fully understand the thought it has. The juice of every American literature helps me grow and think more maturely of what American Society is really about. It help me analyze and reveal the outcomes of everyday life.

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Works Cited
Spark notes. The Crucible. Description of Arthur Millers Great Works. http://www.sparknotes.com/lit/crucible/. (18 March 2005)
Bartleby.com. Common Sense by Thomas Paine. Brief Facts about Thomas Paine and his works.Http://www.bartleby.com/133/. (18 March 2005)
US History Organization. Common Sense by Thomas Paine. Information about Common Sense. http://www.ushistory.org/paine/commonsense/. (18 March 2005)
The Norton Anthology of American Literature, Sixth Edition