literature

Literature is writing, usually good, creative, or smart writing, or at least we hope it is. If you love books and have stacks of them at home, then you are a lover of literature.

Literature comes from the Latin root litterātūra, or lettered, but there are higher standards for literature than just something written down. Novels and stories are considered literature. If you're a practicing psychologist, you have keep up with the current literature on psychology, which is what researching psychologists write, not novels about shrinks. You might want your profession to be literature, but you'll probably have to teach literature while you're waiting for the book deal.

Definitions of literature
1

n published writings in a particular style on a particular subject

“the technical literature
“one aspect of Waterloo has not yet been treated in the literature
Types:
historiography
a body of historical literature
Type of:
piece of writing, writing, written material
the work of a writer; anything expressed in letters of the alphabet (especially when considered from the point of view of style and effect)

n creative writing of recognized artistic value

Examples:
Ramayana
one of two classical Hindu epics telling of the banishment of Rama from his kingdom and the abduction of his wife by a demon and Rama's restoration to the throne
Kamasutra
(Hinduism) an ancient Sanskrit text giving rules for sensuous and sensual pleasure and love and marriage in accordance with Hindu law
Types:
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Sanskrit literature
Hindu literature written in Sanskrit
Hastinapura
one of two classical Hindu epics; a great collection of poetry worked into and around a central heroic narrative (eight times as large as the Iliad and Odyssey combined)
Purana
a body of 18 works written between the first and 11th centuries and incorporating legends and speculative histories of the universe and myths and customary observances
tantra
any of a fairly recent class of Hindu or Buddhist religious literature concerned with ritual acts of body and speech and mind
sutra
a rule or aphorism in Sanskrit literature or a group of aphoristic doctrinal summaries prepared for memorization
Type of:
piece of writing, writing, written material
the work of a writer; anything expressed in letters of the alphabet (especially when considered from the point of view of style and effect)

n the profession or art of a writer

“her place in literature is secure”
Type of:
profession
an occupation requiring special education (especially in the liberal arts or sciences)

n the humanistic study of a body of literature

Synonyms:
lit
Type of:
literary study
the humanistic study of literature

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