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Deb Peterson

The Secret to Understanding Literature

By September 4, 2013

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Rebecca-Emery - Getty-ImagesThere's a secret to understanding literature. Most literature, that is, and I'm guessing all literature you will encounter in English class, and that's what we're concerned about here.

A short aside here: Tim and I went to see The Grey a while ago. It was a gruesome and very unsatisfying movie. Spoiler alert: everyone dies, including the hero. If you're ever in a plane crash in remote Alaska, hope that you die in the crash. It would be a blessing. I digress.

It didn't take much thought to realize why the movie was unsatisfying. It didn't follow the hero's journey. The very best literature throughout all time, the classics, the stories we tell for generations, include the elements of the hero's journey.

The hero's journey is not a formula. The elements don't have to appear in a certain order. It's possible for the villain to be the anti-hero. In fact, the most creative stories turn the elements of the hero's journey on their head and surprise us. But the elements are there.

If you want to improve your grade in your English, literature, and writing classes, the secret is to understand the hero's journey:

How does understanding the hero's journey help you with your reading and writing? Read what others have to say.


April 4, 2012 at 7:07 pm
(1) financial aids says:

Hello there, just became alert to your blog through Google, and located that it
is really informative. I am gonna be careful for brussels.

I’ll be grateful in case you proceed this in future. Many people might be benefited from your writing. Cheers!

March 28, 2014 at 3:39 pm
(2) Gunther Hogarth says:

Gahhh, I hate the Mono-myth


kids today and there precious character development, pft.

May 7, 2014 at 12:15 am
(3) Mike y "the Pikey" ramos says:

I have to agree with Hogarth, but only to that character development some times over shadows the overall point the theme most of the best novel where written before Josephs Campbell notion.

there characters “Journey” is to highlight the theme not necessarily for sake of the journey.

“Kids” today tend to forget that.

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