Breyden Kellam


The novelist C.S. Lewis once said, "Literature adds to reality, it does not simply describe it. It enriches the necessary competencies that daily life requires and provides; and in this respect, it irrigates the deserts that our lives have already become." This profound statement speaks volumes to the invaluable effects that reading has on society as a whole as well as individually. It is a widely held misconception that literature, especially fictitious literary works, possess minimal value and contribute nothing to the world. Furthermore, this era of technological advancement has dominated society with the prevalence of social media networks, television, movies, and handheld devices making books obsolete. Despite this evident aura of irrelevance that literature is slowly but surely encompassing, reading is a fundamental aspect of life that holds an overwhelming amount of practical benefit. It is absolutely vital for more people to know about the indispensable value of literature. Literature inspires creativity and knowledge, creates new experiences, and offers solace and hope in the face of problems. Fictitious works of literature may initially appear to be trivial. After all, what impact could a fabricated story truly have on a life? In actuality, though, reading such stories provide a testament to the extensive possibility of life and inspires readers to live vicariously. Literature has the power to not only inform but also entertain while exposing vital truths and flaws in a society. The creativity and knowledge displayed in literature promotes change and progress, making obstacles that were once insurmountable a reality. A prime example of this is the novel Uncle Tom’s Cabin by Harriet Beecher Stowe. This novel brought attention to the horrors of slavery which led to events that eventually resulted in slavery being abolished. Evidently, literature has played a pivotal role in changing the dynamic of the world while still entertaining and inspiring many. Literature also offers readers the chance to experience new things. An individual can travel to undiscovered places, meet interesting people, and learn about cultures different from his/her own. This enlightening experience resonates with a person even after he/she closes the book. Furthermore, readers gain a sense of comfort and hope when they read about others who endure plights similar to their own. Literature instills the qualities of resilience and faith into our hearts, motivating each one of us to endure. I can personally attest to the power that literature holds. Books have helped me to discover my true identity and cope with the challenges I grapple with daily. It is essential that more people know about the importance of literature. Literature challenges each one of us to exceed our self imposed limitations and dream big.