(An Analysis of Crucial Texts of Western Literature)
There are a countless amount of texts that could be considered instrumental in the creation of what we know as western society and the western world. These texts range from brief English essays such as Francis Bacon’s Of Studies to lengthy Greek epics like the Odyssey The nationality of the authors and the time periods in which they resided can be vastly different or very similar as well. Socrates, Plato and Aristotle are a prime example of closely bonded authors that had an unprecedented impact on western society. Whilst Homer and Shakespeare came from very different places from very different times. Throughout the semester we have studied many texts believed by many well educated individuals to be fundamental in the creation of the modern western world. These texts have legacies that very few things in the world could compete with, some would say that there is no competing with their legacy. Many of the authors of these texts were greatly ridiculed in their times, they likely considered themselves to be failures, Dante or Shakespeare for instance. Certainly, they never could have predicted the impact of each stain on the parchment that would forever change the world. Machiavelli 's The Prince, Plato’s The Republic and “Shakespeare’s” Hamlet had some of the most profound effects on western society.
Shakespeare’s Hamlet is an extraordinary text that had very strong effects on the western world. Hamlet asks many very important questions for western society. One of the first being is there a God and if so is he dead? The following question stems from Hamlet’s soliloquy from Act one scene two in which Hamlet describes the world as an “unwe...
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...ates idea of a professional military also mirrors the modern United States military. Then during the Renaissance Machiavelli reforged the ideas of morality, history and politics. In his novel The Prince he broke away from the Socratic tradition and wrote a piece not on political theory, but political actuality. His idea of the end justifying the means also twisted western society’s view of morality because what does it matter if you write history. Whilst writing he laid the groundwork for how to actually study history. These pieces of literature were some of the most important documents in western literature. Each one has a tremendous influence on the society in which we reside and asks very powerful questions that could shake the foundations of an individual. Therefore, each piece is to be swallowed to better understand one’s self and the society around them.
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