What is Literature - Definition, Types, Examples - Research Method (2023)

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What is Literature - Definition, Types, Examples - Research Method (1)



Literature is any written work, but it is usually used to refer to works of fiction or novels, plays, poems, and short stories. This is because these types of works are usually seen as being more artistic and having more value than other types of writing, such as non-fiction or informational texts.

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History of Literature

A study of literature is essential to understanding humanity. Without literature, we would not know about the thoughts, emotions, and experiences of people from different cultures and times. Knowledge of the history of literature is also necessary for understanding how our own culture has developed.

The first examples of literature date back to around 3500 BCE, when the Sumerians began writing on clay tablets in cuneiform script. This ancient form of writing was used by the Babylonians and Assyrians as well. The earliest known work of literature from this period is The Epic of Gilgamesh, a Mesopotamian poem about a hero’s journey.

The next major development in the history of literature came with the invention of the alphabet in around 1500 BCE. This made it possible for people to write down their thoughts and experiences in a much more efficient way than before. The Ancient Greeks then used the alphabet to develop their own literary tradition.

They wrote plays such as The Trojan Women, and poems including The Iliad, which tells the story of the siege of Troy. The Romans adopted many aspects of Greek culture and language, including their writing system. A page from the Codex Gigas, the world’s largest medieval manuscript. The first books were made in China around 500 BCE. They were often collections of stories or folk tales that told moral and religious lessons. The Chinese then used the written word to develop a rich tradition of poetry and drama. The first book that was also known as a ‘novel’ was One Hundred and One Nights, which was written in Arabic.

Also see What is Humanities

Types of Literature

Types of Literature are as follows:

(Video) Literary Genres: Definition, Types

  • Poetry
  • Prose
  • Novel
  • Novella
  • Short story
  • Graphic novel
  • Electronic literature
  • Nonfiction
  • Drama


Poetry is a form of literature that uses language to convey emotions or ideas in a concise and often rhythmic manner. Poetry has been around for centuries, with many different cultures creating their own unique styles. While some people may view poetry as difficult to understand, there is often great beauty in its simplicity. Whether you are looking to read poems for enjoyment or to better analyze literary works, understanding the basics of poetry can be very helpful.


Prose is a type of written language that typically contains dialogue and narration. In literature, prose is the most common form of writing. Prose can be found in novels, short stories, plays, and essays.


A novel is a fictional book that is typically longer than 300 pages. It tells a story, usually in chronological order, and has characters and settings that are developed over the course of the story. Novels are often divided into chapters, which help to break up the story and make it easier to read.

Novels are one of the most popular genres of literature, and there are many different types of novels that you can read. Whether you’re looking for a romance novel, a mystery novel, or a historical fiction novel, there’s sure to be a book out there that you’ll love.


A novella is a work of fiction that is shorter than a novel but longer than a short story. The word “novella” comes from the Italian word for “new”, which is fitting because this type of story is often seen as being between the old and the new. In terms of length, a novella typically has about 20,000 to 40,000 words.

While novels are usually about one main plot with several subplots, novellas are usually focused on one central conflict. This conflict is usually resolved by the end of the story. However, because novellas are longer than short stories, there is more room to develop characters and explore themes in depth.

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Short story

A short story is a work of fiction that typically can be read in one sitting and focuses on a self-contained incident or series of linked incidents.

The short story is one of the oldest forms of literature and has been found in oral cultures as well as in written form. In terms of length, it is much shorter than the novel, typically ranging from 1,000 to 20,000 words.

The short story has often been described as a “perfect form” because it allows for greater compression and variety than either the novel or poem. It also allows writers to experiment with different styles and genres.

Graphic novel

A graphic novel is a book that tells a story through the use of illustrations and text. Graphic novels can be based on true stories, or they can be fictional. They are usually longer than traditional books, and they often have more complex plots.

Graphic novels first gained popularity in the 1970s, when publishers began releasing collections of comics that had been previously published in magazines. Since then, the genre has grown to include original works, as well as adaptations ofexisting stories.

Graphic novels are now widely respected as a form of literature, and they have been adapted into many different mediums, including movies, television shows, and stage plays.

(Video) what is Literature? Definition) Types of literature/ functions of literature#literature

Electronic literature

Electronic literature, also known as e-literature, is a genre of writing that uses electronic media to create works of art. This type of literature often includes elements of interactivity, hypertextuality, and multimedia.

E-literature has its roots in early computer games and interactive fiction. These early works were created using simple text-based programming languages like BASIC and HTML. Today, e-literature has evolved into a complex form of art that incorporates multimedia elements such as audio and video.


Non-fiction in literature is defined as prose writings that are based on real events, people, or places. Non-fiction is often divided into categories such as biography, history, and essay.


Drama is a genre of literature that tells a story through the use of dialogue and action. It often has a strong plot and characters who undergo change or development over the course of the story. Drama can be divided into several subgenres, such as tragedy, comedy, and farce.

Also see Literature Review

Examples of Literature

One of the earliest examples of literature is the Epic of Gilgamesh, a Mesopotamian poem that dates back to approximately 2100 BCE. This narrative poem tells the story of Gilgamesh, a Sumerian king who goes on a quest to find immortality. The Epic of Gilgamesh is significant not only because it is one of the oldest pieces of literature, but also because it is one of the first examples of literary storytelling.

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Another early example of literature is The Odyssey, an epic poem written by the Greek poet Homer. The Odyssey tells the story of Odysseus, a Greek king who must journey home after enduring ten years of war. Along the way, Odysseus faces many challenges, including shipwrecks, monsters, and seductive women.

Purpose of Literature

When it comes to literature, there are a variety of purposes it can serve.

  • It can be used to entertain, inform, or even teach.
  • Oftentimes, literature is used as a form of escapism, providing readers with a way to escape the everyday stresses of life.
  • For some, literature is a way to explore different cultures and worlds, without ever having to leave home.
  • No matter what the purpose may be, literature has the ability to transport readers to new and exciting places.

Also see What is Art – Definition, Types, Examples


What is literature in research example? ›

A literature review is a survey of scholarly sources (such as books, journal articles, and theses) related to a specific topic or research question. It is often written as part of a thesis, dissertation, or research paper, in order to situate your work in relation to existing knowledge.

What are the 4 types of research methods? ›

There are four main types of Quantitative research: Descriptive, Correlational, Causal-Comparative/Quasi-Experimental, and Experimental Research. attempts to establish cause- effect relationships among the variables.

What is literature and its examples? ›

As an artistic term, literature refers to written works, such as novels, short stories, biographies, memories, essays, and poetry. However, songs, movies, TV shows, video games, and paintings are typically not considered to be literature because the final output is not text.

What is research and define its methods with examples? ›

Research is the careful consideration of study regarding a particular concern or problem using scientific methods. According to the American sociologist Earl Robert Babbie, “research is a systematic inquiry to describe, explain, predict, and control the observed phenomenon. It involves inductive and deductive methods.”

What are the 5 examples of literature? ›

Poetry, fiction, nonfiction, drama, and prose are the five main genres of literature.

What are the 3 example of literature? ›

Examples of literary works:
  • fiction.
  • nonfiction.
  • manuscripts.
  • poetry.
  • contributions to collective works.
  • compilations of data or other literary subject matter.
  • dissertations.
  • theses.

What are the 5 types of methods? ›

MethodFocusSample Size
NarrativeIndividual experience & sequence1 to 2
PhenomenologicalPeople who have experienced a phenomenon5 to 25
Grounded TheoryDevelop a theory grounded in field data20 to 60
Case StudyOrganization, entity, individual, or event
1 more row
Oct 13, 2015

What are the 7 types of research? ›

Classification of Types of Research
  • Theoretical Research. ...
  • Applied Research. ...
  • Exploratory Research. ...
  • Descriptive Research. ...
  • Explanatory Research. ...
  • Qualitative Research. ...
  • Quantitative Research. ...
  • Experimental Research.
Oct 2, 2020

What is literature and types? ›

Literature, as an art form, can also include works in various non-fiction genres, such as biography, diaries, memoir, letters, and essays. Within its broad definition, literature includes non-fictional books, articles or other printed information on a particular subject.

What are the 4 types of literature? ›

In the landscape of literature, there are four major genres: poetry, drama, fiction, and creative nonfiction.

What is the main definition of literature? ›

literature, a body of written works. The name has traditionally been applied to those imaginative works of poetry and prose distinguished by the intentions of their authors and the perceived aesthetic excellence of their execution.

What is example of method? ›

Method Sentence Examples

We have already seen this method work. Now I'm able to adjust my method of operation accordingly. His method was direct — addressing her needs with simple statements and questions. This method in one shape or another has been often employed.

What's a research method? ›

Research methods are the strategies, processes or techniques utilized in the collection of data or evidence for analysis in order to uncover new information or create better understanding of a topic. There are different types of research methods which use different tools for data collection.

What is your definition of research? ›

Research is a process of systematic inquiry that entails collection of data; documentation of critical information; and analysis and interpretation of that data/information, in accordance with suitable methodologies set by specific professional fields and academic disciplines.

What are the 8 types of literature? ›

Literary Genres
  • Drama. Stories composed in verse or prose, usually for theatrical performance, where conflicts and emotion are expressed through dialogue and action.
  • Fable. ...
  • Fairy Tale. ...
  • Fantasy. ...
  • Fiction. ...
  • Fiction in Verse. ...
  • Folklore. ...
  • Historical Fiction.

What is the 7 Elements of literature? ›

These elements are character, plot, setting, theme, point of view, conflict, and tone. All seven elements work together to create a coherent story. When you're writing a story, these are the fundamental building blocks you should use.

What are the types of literature in research? ›

Different types of literature reviews
  • Narrative or Traditional literature reviews. ...
  • Scoping Reviews. ...
  • Systematic style literature review. ...
  • Systematic Quantitative Literature Review. ...
  • Cochrane Reviews. ...
  • Campbell Collaboration. ...
  • Integrative. ...
  • Meta-analysis.
Nov 1, 2022

What are the 3 parts of literature? ›

Prose, drama and poetry are the three main types of literature. The table below shows the main differences between them. Dialogue is presented with dramatic effective in mind.

What are the 6 types of literary? ›

The 6 Types of Literary Conflict
  • Character vs. Self. This is an internal conflict, meaning that the opposition the character faces is coming from within. ...
  • Character vs. Character. ...
  • Character vs. Nature. ...
  • Character vs. Supernatural. ...
  • Character vs. Technology. ...
  • Character vs. Society.
Sep 29, 2021

How many types are there in literature? ›

There are four main literary genres: poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and drama.

What are the 6 components of research methods? ›

These components include things like your chosen: (a) research design; (b) research methodology; (c) approach within a research methodology; (d) research method(s); (e) use of longitudinal data; (f) sampling strategy; and (g) data analysis techniques.

What are the six main research methods? ›

In conducting research, sociologists choose between six research methods: (1) survey, (2) participant observation, (3), secondary analysis, (4) documents, (5) unobtrusive measures, and (6) experiments.

What are the 3 types of research? ›

Most research can be divided into three different categories: exploratory, descriptive and causal. Each serves a different end purpose and can only be used in certain ways. In the online survey world, mastery of all three can lead to sounder insights and greater quality information.

What are the 9 parts of research? ›

A complete research paper in APA style that is reporting on experimental research will typically contain a Title page, Abstract, Introduction, Methods, Results, Discussion, and References sections. Many will also contain Figures and Tables and some will have an Appendix or Appendices.

What are the 8 elements of research? ›

Research elements
  • 1) THE RESEARCH QUESTION: The best research question should specify just one measurable result, as well as all the conditions and important variables. ...
  • 2) HYPOTHESIS: ...
  • 4) POPULATION: ...
  • 5) SAMPLE: ...
  • 6) SAMPLING: ...
  • 7) MANOEUVRE: ...

What are the 8 process of research? ›

The Research Process in 8 Simple Steps
  • Step 1: Select a Topic. ...
  • Step 2: Find Background Information. ...
  • Step 3: Use the Online Catalog to Find Books. ...
  • Step 4: Find Magazine Articles. ...
  • Step 5: Find Newspaper Articles. ...
  • Step 6: Find Internet Resources. ...
  • Step 7: Evaluate What You Find. ...
  • Step 8: Cite What You Find.

What are the 4 main types of qualitative research? ›

Qualitative research focuses on gaining insight and understanding about an individual's perception of events and circumstances. Six common types of qualitative research are phenomenological, ethnographic, grounded theory, historical, case study, and action research.

What is literature in research? ›

Literature refers to a collection of published information/materials on a particular area of research or topic, such as books and journal articles of academic value.

What are the two types of literature in research? ›

Types of Literature
  • Primary Literature. Primary sources means original studies, based on direct observation, use of statistical records, interviews, or experimental methods, of actual practices or the actual impact of practices or policies. ...
  • Secondary Literature. ...
  • Tertiary Literature.
Mar 11, 2022

What is literature definition essay? ›

essay, an analytic, interpretative, or critical literary composition usually much shorter and less systematic and formal than a dissertation or thesis and usually dealing with its subject from a limited and often personal point of view.

What is the 5 elements of literature? ›

These five components are: the characters, the setting, the plot, the conflict, and the resolution. These essential elements keep the story running smoothly and allow the action to develop in a logical way that the reader can follow.

What are the 4 main elements of literature? ›

Literary elements include plot, theme, character and tone. In contrast, literary techniques are non-universal features of literature and include figurative language, irony, and foreshadowing.

What are the 5 elements of style in literature? ›

Features of style include the following: diction (word choice) • sentence structure and syntax • nature of figurative language • rhythm and component sounds • rhetorical patterns (e.g. narration, description, comparison-contrast, etc.)

Which is the best definition of literature review? ›

A literature review is the writing process of summarizing, synthesizing and/or critiquing the literature found as a result of a literature search. It may be used as background or context for a primary research project. There are several reasons to review the literature: Identify the developments in the field of study.

What do you think is the best definition of literature and why? ›

Literature is a term used to describe written and sometimes spoken material. Derived from the Latin word literature meaning "writing formed with letters," literature most commonly refers to works of the creative imagination, including poetry, drama, fiction, nonfiction, and in some instances, journalism, and song.

What is literature summary? ›

A literature summary table provides a synopsis of an included article. It succinctly presents its purpose, methods, findings and other relevant information pertinent to the review. The aim of developing these literature summary tables is to provide the reader with the information at one glance.

What is method short answer? ›

noun. meth·​od ˈmeth-əd. : a procedure or process for attaining an object: as. : a systematic procedure, technique, or mode of inquiry employed by or proper to a particular discipline see scientific method. : a way, technique, or process of or for doing something.

How do you write a research method example? ›

Therefore, the methods section structure should: describe the materials used in the study, explain how the materials were prepared for the study, describe the research protocol, explain how measurements were made and what calculations were performed, and state which statistical tests were done to analyze the data.

What are the different types of methods? ›

There are three main types of methods: interface methods, constructor methods, and implementation methods.

How many research methods are there? ›

There are two main categories of research methods: qualitative research methods and quantitative research methods.

What is the best research method? ›

Using quantitative analysis works better if you want to confirm or test something (a theory or hypothesis) Using qualitative research works better if you wish to understand something (concepts, thoughts, experiences)

What is a method in literature? ›

It refers to literatures that process and sort books and papers to summarize the main points and to put them in system. with some methods, such as the bibliography, titles, abstracts, indexes and other publications. Such documentation. will be distributed in a systematic literature, entries.

What is the 3 definition of research? ›

especially : investigation or experimentation aimed at the discovery and interpretation of facts, revision of accepted theories or laws in the light of new facts, or practical application of such new or revised theories or laws. : the collecting of information about a particular subject. 3. : careful or diligent search.

What is basic research answer? ›

What is basic research? Basic research, or fundamental research, is a type of investigation focused on improving the understanding of a particular phenomenon, study or law of nature. This type of research examines data to find the unknown and fulfill a sense of curiosity.

What is another definition for research? ›

1 scrutiny, study. 4 study, inquire, examine, scrutinize.

How do you identify literature in research? ›

Identifying literature
  1. Databases.
  2. Citation searching - combing through bibliographies of relevant articles.
  3. Hand searching - reviewing tables of contents in key relevant journals.
  4. Raiding - review archives of listservs and other relevant mailing lists.
  5. Expert polling - asking tutors and colleagues for suggestions.

Can you give me an example of literature? ›

poetry. contributions to collective works. compilations of data or other literary subject matter. dissertations.

What is research literature in research? ›

What Is the Research Literature? The research literature in any field is all the published research in that field. The research literature in psychology is enormous—including millions of scholarly articles and books dating to the beginning of the field—and it continues to grow.

How do you define literature? ›

literature, a body of written works. The name has traditionally been applied to those imaginative works of poetry and prose distinguished by the intentions of their authors and the perceived aesthetic excellence of their execution.

What research method is used for literature review? ›

A literature reviewer might use quantitative research approaches to synthesize quantitative-based works and qualitative research approaches to synthesize qualitative-based works.

What are the 6 stages of a literature search? ›

  • Step 1: Decide on your research question in your own words. For example: “Discuss the closure of residential care homes for older people”.
  • Step 2: Define the terms and concepts. ...
  • Step 3: Use Boolean operators. ...
  • Step 4: Limit your search. ...
  • Step 5: Select the right database. ...
  • Step 6: Start searching!

What is literature * Your answer? ›

Literature is a term used to describe written and sometimes spoken material. Derived from the Latin word literature meaning "writing formed with letters," literature most commonly refers to works of the creative imagination, including poetry, drama, fiction, nonfiction, and in some instances, journalism, and song.

Which is not an example of literature? ›

Examples of non-literary text include newspaper and magazine articles, brochures, and advertisements.

What are types of literature in research? ›

Different types of literature reviews
  • Narrative or Traditional literature reviews. ...
  • Scoping Reviews. ...
  • Systematic style literature review. ...
  • Systematic Quantitative Literature Review. ...
  • Cochrane Reviews. ...
  • Campbell Collaboration. ...
  • Integrative. ...
  • Meta-analysis.
Nov 1, 2022

What are the three types of research literature? ›

Different types of publications have different characteristics.
  • Primary Literature. ...
  • Secondary Literature. ...
  • Tertiary Literature.
Mar 11, 2022

Why is literature used in research? ›

It establishes the authors' in-depth understanding and knowledge of their field subject. It gives the background of the research. Portrays the scientific manuscript plan of examining the research result. Illuminates on how the knowledge has changed within the field.


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