Genre

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Genre (pronounced /ˈʒɑːnrə/, also /ˈdʒɑːnrə/; from French, genre French pronunciation: [ʒɑ̃ʁ], "kind" or "sort", from Latin: genus (stem gener-), Greek: genos, γένος) is the term for any category of literature as well as various other forms of art or culture, e.g., music, based on some loose set of stylistic criteria. Genres are formed by conventions that change over time as new genres are invented and the use of old ones are discontinued. Often, works fit into multiple genres by way of borrowing and recombining these conventions.

While the scope of the word "genre" is commonly confined to art and culture, it also defines individuals' interactions with and within their environments. In order to be recognized as genre these interactions and environments must be recurring.

Contents

History

The concept of genre originated from the classification systems created by Aristotle and Plato. Plato divided literature into the three classic genres accepted in Ancient Greece: poetry, drama, and prose. Poetry is further subdivided into epic, lyric, and drama. The divisions are recognized as being set by Aristotle and Plato; however, they were not alone. Many genre theorists contributed to these universally accepted forms of poetry. Similarly many theorists continued to philosophize about genre and its uses, which caused genre as Plato and Aristotle knew it to evolve and further expand.

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