The Journey In Literature
From its beginnings, literature has been characterized to a remarkable degree by narratives and images of journeys. What gets many texts started and what keeps them going is very commonly a journey of some sort. However, these journeys are not always simple physical journeys from one place to another. Writers often use journeys as metaphorical representations of life itself. In one way or another, journey metaphors enable writers to express notions of chance and choice, discovery and departure, and search and struggle. As the critic Stephen Hutchinson so clearly puts it, "the journey is a universal, yet diverse metaphor that reveals a great deal about how writers in different places, times, and persuasions characterize themselves and the very world that they live in" (Hutchinson 72). Accordingly, great writers such as Homer, Miguel De Cervantes, St. Augustine, and John Bunyan, have all characterized life as a journey in many of their great works. For example, while Homer's Odyssey and Cervantes' Don Quixote examine life through metaphorical journeys of circular departure and return, Augustine and Bunyan represent life through journeys of a much more linear and progressive nature.
Through and throughout telling...
Join Now to View Premium Content
GradeSaver provides access to 777 study guide PDFs and quizzes, 5346 literature essays, 1606 sample college application essays, 212 lesson plans, and ad-free surfing in this premium content, “Members Only” section of the site! Membership includes a 10% discount on all editing orders.
Already a member? Log in