On Literature

I'm currently reading a book by Booker Prize-Winning author, Ben Okri: A Time for New Dreams. It’s a compilation of essays and aphorisms rendered in a pithy way.

It's been my early morning read and today I found this interesting take on Literature.

It is not enough just to pass one’s eyes over the words, to read literature passively. That would be like what Mozart said about his mother-in-law: ‘She would see the opera, but not hear it.’ We should read this literature with an open mind, an intelligent heart.

True literature tears up the script of what we think humanity to be. It transcends the limitations we impose on the possibilities of being human. It dissolves preconceptions. True literature helps us deal with something partly new and partly unknown. That is why we can't ask for new literature to be like the old, to give us the same pleasures as those that have gone before. That wouldn't be living literature, which surprises and redefines. That would be mere repetition.

Literature mirror, reveals, liberates.

Quite succinct.