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List of literature on the history of literature. History of World Literature

In order to learn to understand the main trends in the development of any cultural sphere, you should read a lot of work. But before proceeding, it is worth making a list of literature. Many books have been written on the history of literature. Some are created by professional literary critics. Others are their adapted analogues, designed for a wide range of readers. Preference should be given first.

To cover an essential layer of culture one volume, even very voluminous, can not. Therefore, compiling a list of literature on the history of literature, it is necessary to follow the periodization.

Ancient literature

Why do I need to read works by authors who lived more than twenty centuries ago? To overestimate the enormous influence of ancient literature on contemporary prose and poetry is impossible. The great Pushkin once said: "We all came from the temple of Gomerov." The classic was referring to the works of the ancient Greek poet, who for a long time studied all more or less educated people. The most learned of them even read the poems of Homer in the original.

Since Pushkin's death passed many years, much has changed. Significant transformations have also affected fiction. But still mythological motifs and subjects from works of ancient Roman and ancient Greek authors in various fields of culture are present today. Therefore, a person who wants to be recognized as an educated person should know at least the names of the main representatives of ancient culture. Well, those who wish to study this topic deeply, it is necessary to make a list of literature. According to the history of the literature of Antiquity, mainly educational materials intended for future philologists have been created. The most famous of them are:

  • IM Tronsky "History of Ancient Literature."
  • I. F, Annensky "The History of Ancient Drama".
  • BA Gilenson "History of Ancient Literature".
  • A. F, Losev "History of ancient aesthetics".
  • ML Gasparov "Literature of European Antiquity."

Of course, all these works should be read only by those who plan to spend most of their life somewhere far from civilization and secular life. For example, at the Department of Classical Philology of one of the state universities. All books can not be read. You can only choose from them those that are actually needed. Therefore, having compiled a list of literature on the history of literature and breaking it into parts according to periodization, it is enough to read one piece from each section.

Ancient Russian Literature

The period from XI-XVII in the culture of Rus became special. In these centuries, special genres in literature developed. There are no analogues to them in world culture. This is the chronicle, and the military story, and life. The great monument of culture of this period is "The Lay of Igor's Host". Reading these works is quite difficult for the perception of modern man. But in order to get acquainted with the main features of such literature, you can read "The History of Ancient Russian Literature". The author is NK Gudziy.

Medieval literature

The development of literature is inextricably linked with historical events and the characteristic features of the social life of a particular period. The Middle Ages - it's time gloomy and bleak. In any case, this idea has a modern man about him. But even in this era works were created that have survived to this day. You can find out about them from VM Zhirmunsky's book "The History of Foreign Literature. The Middle Ages and the Renaissance ». In this textbook, as can be seen from the title, it is also about the next stage in the development of culture.


During this period, literature received a special development. The main feature of the works of the authors of this era is the idea of humanism, which became fundamental in the culture of Europe as a whole. However, in every country, writers and poets created their creations under the influence of national characteristics. About what characteristics possessed the works of these authors, you can learn from the textbook of the Soviet literary critic B. I Purishev. The book is called "Foreign Literature. Renaissance".


This term is understood as an artistic style and aesthetic direction in culture. Classic literary works are, first of all, plays, dramas and odes. Representatives of this area in Russia were Lomonosov, Derzhavin, Fonvizin. Anyone who considers it necessary to understand the wisdom of creating works in these genres should study the work of the Russian critic L. V. Pumpyanskiy "On the History of Russian Classicism."

The history of nineteenth-century Russian literature

In just one century, an unprecedented rise took place in the culture of Russia. Especially it concerned literature. This century is famous for its galaxy of brilliant poets and writers. Among them Pushkin, Gogol, Turgenev, Dostoevsky and many others. Of course, there are a lot of books devoted to this period. The most popular is VI Korovin's The History of Russian Literature of the 19th Century. This book is published in three volumes, each of which is devoted to certain tendencies and peculiarities of the development of poetry and prose in Russia.

Literature of the XX century

In the last century in the world there were so many decisive events that this could not but affect the culture. Literature of the 20th century acquired special forms. In Russia, this period can be divided into several small segments, each of which includes a number of talented authors. If we talk about the literature of Germany, Britain, France and the US, then a lot of textbooks are devoted to this topic. One of them is "Foreign Literature of XX". The author is LG Andreev. And such a topic as "Literature of the 20th century in Russia" is disclosed in the textbook SI Kormilov. His book covers the period from the 20's to the 90's. The title of the textbook is "The History of Russian Literature of the 20th Century."

Contemporary Russian prose

It can include works that were created in the period considered by the Russian theoretician Kormilov. Modern prose is a relative concept. Representatives of this period in the development of literature can be attributed to the authors who write today, and those who worked half a century ago. But if we understand writers who now publish their books under the phrase "Modern Prose", then the work on the study of this period will be written not earlier than in another thirty or forty years.

children's literature

Literature for the youngest readers arose as a separate direction in the XVII century. Therefore, the theme "The history of children's literature" is not as extensive as any other, considered in this article. In Russia, prose for children began to develop actively during the time of Peter the Great. Significant contributions were made by such authors as Derzhavin, Karamzin, Sumarokov. The history of children's literature is a young science. Not much work has been devoted to it. Yet one can name one of them - "Our Children's Literature" by F. Tolle.

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