British Literature Flashcards, test questions and answers
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What is British Literature?
British literature is a body of work rooted in the languages, literatures and cultures of the British Isles. It has been influential throughout the world since its beginnings more than 1,000 years ago. Its history spans centuries and genres, with works ranging from Beowulf to Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice to J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter series. The range of topics explored by British writers is wide-ranging; it includes themes such as war, politics, love, religion and class struggles just to name a few.The earliest examples of classical British literature come from Anglo-Saxon poets such as CÃ¦dmon and Bede who lived during what is now known as the Early Middle Ages (5th – 10th centuries). During this time period much of Britain was ruled by Germanic kings who introduced elements of their language into local vernacular which eventually became Old English modern English’s most direct ancestor. This period also saw the emergence of some major literary works including Beowulf (c. 700), an epic poem detailing RagnarÃ¶k-like battles between good versus evil forces; The Dream of the Rood (8th century), a religious poem centering around Christ’s crucifixion; Caedmon’s Hymn (7th century), one of the oldest surviving pieces written in Old English; Bede’s Ecclesiastical History (731 AD) an important source for early Medieval England history; and Sir Gawain & The Green Knight (14th century), an Arthurian romance about chivalry and courtly love. Modern British Literature refers to works produced after 1500 when William Caxton brought printing presses over from Europe allowing books to be published on a wider scale than ever before. Some key authors associated with this period are Christopher Marlowe, William Shakespeare, John Milton, Daniel Defoe and Jonathan Swift among others who developed new ways writing poetry or prose that expressed emotion more freely than earlier periods had done before them. In addition to these writers there were many other contributors producing plays/poems/novels etc on various forms covering both serious philosophical issues as well as lighter topics like satire & farce which gained popularity during Queen Elizabeth I’s reign in particular due her strong support for cultural patronage programs aimed at promoting writing talent across England at large.In today’s era we see heightened interest in not only classic but contemporary works too with popular authors like JK Rowling creating entire universes through her novels while others continue exploring traditional themes like domesticity within contexts that reflect our current times perfectly – all thanks largely due advances made possible by digital media technology making it easier for readers everywhere access diverse kinds material quickly easily without having leave home.