Literary Criticism Of The Seasons Essay

1778 Words Mar 16th, 2015 8 Pages
If there’s something certain in this world, it’s the seasons. Every year since the moment that our planet first took shape, our twenty-three and a half degree tilt has caused our world to go through an annual cycle of weather. Children around the world are taught from a young age about our four seasons and their implications. Because every part of Earth experiences some cyclical change in the weather, our struggle with the seasons is an experience that every single human shares. This experience crosses cultural differences to bring us together. Because the seasons are a well-known and globally shared experience, the symbolic use of seasons in literature has become quite common. If there’s anything just as certain as the seasons themselves, it’s the use seasons in literature. More often than not, seasons have a fairly obvious symbolic use in literature. For example, spring tends to symbolize a rebirth or youth, leading to a peak, which would be symbolized by summer. In his “Theory of Myths,” literary critic Northrop Frye proposed that all literature could be categorized by a single mythos. Frye proposed that there were four mythoi, and based them off of the four seasons. Each mythos is based off of the common uses of that season in literature. For example, tragedy is represented by the mythos of fall. To say that only one “season” could be representative of a piece of literature, or even of a whole genre seems to be an over-simplification. Even though literary genres can be…

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