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Word Count: 1,376
Literature is often viewed as a window to other worlds and alternate realities It has also been referred to as a window to the past which is a far more accurate quote than the speaker may have realized Because the ability to communicate abstract thoughts in a spoken or written form is one of the many characteristics that separates humanity from all other animals on the face of the earth it stands to reason that literature would have become a very large part of human civilization In fact it has become the single largest part of human civilization for without it humanity would have no ability to collectively remember itself As stated by Edward Bulwer-Lytton Writers are the landmarks of the past However that quotation must be amended slightly to take into account the fact that not all writers are as well known as their works So certainly literature is a landmark to the past and its unique ability to shape history cannot be overlooked Because it is such a powerful tool it is able also to shape the past future not only to provide a reference point to look back on the past So literature is a landmark to the past with the ability to alter perception a powerful euphoric placed in the proper hands and administered correctly and because of its intoxicant properties it is able to help shape the future as well as link present day humanity with events of the past It is true that world events serve as landmarks but how are these events recorded They are written down almost invariably for without literature the human race would have no way of keeping score or of recording its own past This sentiment is echoed by philosopher and author Hermann Hesse when he says For even the most childish intoxication with progress will soon be forced to recognize that writing and books have a function that is eternal It will
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