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How to Read and Appreciate A Treasury of World Literature

A Treasury of World Literature Cruz PDF Download

If you are a student of literature or simply a lover of books, you might be interested in reading A Treasury of World Literature, a collection of literary works from different periods and regions of the world. This book was written by Jesus Q. Cruz and other Filipino authors who have extensive experience in teaching and researching literature. It is designed to introduce readers to the richness and diversity of world literature and to foster their appreciation and understanding of different cultures and traditions. In this article, we will give you an overview of the contents and benefits of this book, as well as some tips on how to download it in PDF format.

a treasury of world literature cruz pdf download

The Contents of the Book

A Treasury of World Literature is divided into four parts, each covering a major historical era and featuring selections from various genres and forms of literature. Here are some highlights from each part:

Part One: The Ancient World

This part covers the literary works from ancient civilizations such as Mesopotamia, Egypt, Greece, Rome, India, China, and Japan. Some examples are:

  • The Epic of Gilgamesh, one of the oldest surviving stories in the world that tells the adventures of a legendary king in search of immortality.

  • The Book of the Dead, a collection of spells and prayers that guided the ancient Egyptians in their journey to the afterlife.

  • The Iliad and the Odyssey, two epic poems by Homer that depict the events of the Trojan War and its aftermath.

  • The Aeneid, an epic poem by Virgil that narrates the founding of Rome by Aeneas, a Trojan hero who escaped from Troy.

  • The Bhagavad Gita, a sacred text of Hinduism that contains a dialogue between the warrior Arjuna and the god Krishna on the eve of a great battle.

  • The Analects, a collection of sayings and teachings of Confucius, the founder of Confucianism, a philosophy that influenced Chinese culture and society for centuries.

  • The Tale of Genji, a novel by Murasaki Shikibu that portrays the life and love affairs of a nobleman in the Heian period of Japan.

Part Two: The Middle Ages

This part covers the literary works from medieval Europe, Arabia, Persia, India, China, and Japan. Some examples are:

  • The Divine Comedy, an epic poem by Dante Alighieri that describes his journey through the three realms of the afterlife: Hell, Purgatory, and Paradise.

  • The Canterbury Tales, a collection of stories by Geoffrey Chaucer that depict the pilgrims who travel to Canterbury to visit the shrine of Thomas Becket.

  • The Thousand and One Nights, a collection of stories from Arabian and Persian folklore that are narrated by Scheherazade, a clever woman who tells stories to her husband, the king, to delay her execution.

  • The Rubaiyat, a collection of quatrains by Omar Khayyam that express his views on life, death, love, and fate.

  • The Ramayana, an epic poem by Valmiki that recounts the story of Rama, an incarnation of the god Vishnu, who rescues his wife Sita from the demon king Ravana.

  • The Journey to the West, a novel by Wu Cheng'en that tells the adventures of Sun Wukong, a monkey king who accompanies a monk on his quest to obtain Buddhist scriptures from India.

  • The Pillow Book, a diary by Sei Shonagon that records her observations and opinions on various aspects of court life in Heian Japan.

Part Three: The Renaissance and the Enlightenment

This part covers the literary works from the period of cultural revival and intellectual development in Europe and beyond. Some examples are:

  • Hamlet, a tragedy by William Shakespeare that explores the themes of revenge, madness, and mortality through the story of a prince who seeks to avenge his father's murder.

  • Don Quixote, a novel by Miguel de Cervantes that satirizes the chivalric romances of the Middle Ages through the adventures of a delusional knight and his faithful squire.

  • Candide, a novella by Voltaire that criticizes the optimism and rationalism of the Enlightenment through the misfortunes of a young man who travels around the world.

  • Gulliver's Travels, a novel by Jonathan Swift that mocks the human nature and society through the voyages of a shipwrecked sailor who encounters various fantastical lands and peoples.

  • Pride and Prejudice, a novel by Jane Austen that depicts the manners and morals of the English gentry through the romance between Elizabeth Bennet and Mr. Darcy.

  • Faust, a drama by Johann Wolfgang von Goethe that portrays the fate of a scholar who sells his soul to the devil in exchange for unlimited knowledge and pleasure.

  • Les Miserables, a novel by Victor Hugo that depicts the lives and struggles of various characters in 19th-century France against the backdrop of historical events such as the French Revolution and the June Rebellion.

Part Four: The Modern World

This part covers the literary works from the 19th and 20th centuries that reflect the social, political, and artistic changes in the world. Some examples are:

  • The Metamorphosis, a novella by Franz Kafka that tells the story of Gregor Samsa, a salesman who wakes up one day to find himself transformed into a giant insect.

  • The Catcher in the Rye, a novel by J.D. Salinger that follows the experiences and thoughts of Holden Caulfield, a rebellious teenager who wanders around New York City after being expelled from his school.

Things Fall Apart, a novel by Chinua Achebe that depicts the impact of colonialism on m>, and The Kite Runner.

  • Why should I read this book?

You should read this book if you want to learn about different cultures, histories, values, and beliefs that shape the human experience. You should also read this book if you want to improve your skills in analyzing, interpreting, comparing, and evaluating texts from different genres and contexts. You should also read this book if you want to appreciate the beauty and diversity of language and expression. You should also read this book if you want to find inspiration for your own creative endeavors.


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