Literary text

A literary text is one whose characteristics range from the predominance of the poetic function to the narrative (referentially), lyrical (expressively) and drama (appellatively) and this can occur in any of the existing genres. One can also speak of the term as a written and oral production that focuses on the most playful, aesthetic and poetic forms of language and that, moreover, is positioned above the objective, informative or real content of the message. Under an analysis of literary texts, it is clear that the reader is endowed with highly subjective approaches.

What is a literary text

This term refers to all those texts that have the ability to promote internal characteristics according to literary genres, these can be essays, plays, poetry or narrative.

These texts are characterized by having a free, apparently experiential, reflective and very contemplative content with respect to life, all with the aim of making the reader experience a set of sensations and emotions in their state of mind. Now, under a different point of view, that is, linguistic, the term is defined as one in which the poetic functions of language prevail.

With that premise, it is clear that reference is made to a textual composition that focuses on the way language is written, its ability to make the reader feel what the characters feel, to make people enter a world totally new literary, with beauty and imagination.

The term is well known because it allows the recreation of fictional universes regardless of whether they are related to plots, imaginary situations, concepts or ideas. Basically, it allows the transmission of feelings, thoughts, sensations and ideas to the person reading the text regardless of gender.

The nature of these writings is quite varied and it all depends on the genre that is being read, for example, essays or narratives are made up of prose, while poetry is made up of verses. Their nature or structure changes, but they are similar.

Literary Text - Reading a literary text

Now, it is important to mention and define non-literary writings so as not to create confusion. These writings operate under a quite evident sense in the world and have a kind of utility, for example, the instructions to use a refrigerator or kitchens, the information on billboards, the telephone messages that are written down in a notebook or notebook, among others.

The difference between one text and the other lies in its nature, since each one is totally opposite. The literary text is characterized by being attached to the genres, it has an initial structure but in the end, the message it seeks to convey is the same, since its function is to interact with the reader through emotions thanks to linguistic aesthetics.

Etymologically speaking, the word text comes from the Latin textus, whose meaning refers to a link or fabric, a set of linked words that could not be lost. The word literary originates from the Latin “Litterarius”. Together, they allude to a link of stories that must be told to a specific audience, thanks to which they have existed from poetry and lyrics to essays, plays, etc.

non-literary text

They are those whose purpose is to provide concrete and orderly information, they are not developed to entertain but to inform, such as; instructions, cooking recipes, laws, among others.

Non-literary texts have many variables, they are guided by instructions, functions and orders, they are informative, conative and referential. Instead of transmitting emotions or ideas, they convey information of importance to the reader, such as advertising, legal regulations, information to increase knowledge, among others.

Characteristics of a literary text

Among the most notable features of the term are mentioned:

  • It does not have a defined utility, nor a practical purpose.
  • The language used is not very conventional, avant-garde or daring, it is more traditional and open to reading comprehension.
  • The situations reported are not real, they are fictitious and it is impossible for them to take place.
  • There are cases in which some of these events have happened, however, they have that fictional characteristic that makes them novel and not very credible.
  • They have the ability to express deep, philosophical, subjective content that instantly catches the reader.
  • They are preserved in history, this means that they do not change and their structure and elements remain intact.

Structure of the literary text

Its structure is basic, it uses the classic means to stay and not change over time, this means that they have an introduction, development, climax and the outcome that leads to a conclusion, however, there is the possibility of being able to organize them in different ways. ways, for example, in a linear arrangement in which the elements appear consecutively until the writing is finished.

Another structural way of this aspect is the convergent disposition, which is known as “two meeting points”, in which all the elements are located in the final part of the writing.

It is also possible to have a dispersed structure, that is, the elements of the writing are not fully defined, which makes the writing somewhat chaotic to create, but fun for the reader.

In addition to this, there is the additive and open structure, that is, where the elements are added continuously throughout the text and there is the possibility of adding even more. Finally, the closed structure, something contrary to the previous characteristic, since elements can never be added, for this a new script would have to be created.

Types of literary texts

Literary Text - Literary text (novels)

The classification of literary texts is divided into four main aspects, which in turn are known as genres of literature. Its classification goes according to the methods and tools that are used to create a playful and aesthetic effect in the reader that engages him in reading and can perceive the emotions or thoughts of the author. These genres are as follows.


It is within the classification of literary texts because they are short stories, chronicles, novels, short stories or any other form of fantastic, realistic, imaginary or fictional story. In this type of genre, both the author and the reader focus on the characters, on the figure of the narrator, on the plot, on who tells the story and who generates tension, expectations and all kinds of emotions for the reader.

The narrative in turn, is divided into stories, legends, myths and fables.


They are short oral or written narratives, in which imaginary stories are told with few characters. The plot is not complicated since the climax and outcome are reached quickly.


They narrate real or imaginary events, accompanied by incredible elements of the culture of the region from which they originate. They are usually transmitted orally, from generation to generation.

Literary Text - Legend of La Llorona


They are short stories, told orally, that narrate the great implausible actions of the protagonists, generally speaking of gods or heroes of ancient stories.

Literary Text - Mexican Myths


They are literary narratives that offer between their lines, teachings or advice on good coexistence or existence.


It is one of the most complex and free arts in literature, this is because it does not have an identifying format that can define it, except for the belief that it describes a kind of subjective state of being, that is, the perspectives of life, feelings, narrative and reflections, however, does not have previously defined characters, nor does it have a plot or narrators.

This is conceptualized as a creation of its own language that, according to history, had verses and rhymes that were counted by syllables, however, it is currently considered as something archaic. It is classified into:


Literary art considered as the artistic expression of harmony and beauty of oral narration. Among its characteristics is that it is measured, has rhythm and cadence.


Calligrams are those poems that apart from making sense in prose, rhyme and rhythm, are structured in such a way that the reader ends up visualizing a drawn image with the content of the poem.


Group of words, where some of its letters, initials, middle or final, form verses, which may or may not rhyme with each other.


These writings are born intended for physical representation, that is, for cinema, theater or television. This has the ability to have a suitable stage for the works and characters of professional stature, in addition, it captures and evidences situations or events right in front of the viewer, being able to be live or through a television or computer without the need for mediation. , that is, it is not necessary for them to have a narrator to understand the story.

This aspect is further divided into:


It is a dramatic work where passion and fatality lead the characters to a terrible end.


It is one that presents conflicts between the characters in their dialogues and actions.


Called comedy, the opposite genre to tragedy, that is, despite showing terrible moments, its ending is always happy.


Unlike the rest of the genres, this one focuses on addressing explanatory aspects and reflections of a situation, which can be an exposition or an argument on a topic that is of interest to the author and, consequently, to the reader. It achieves this through exposition exercises that offer different points of view, among them, the subjective ones, something new, a new perspective that allows to put aside the verification of hypotheses or the demonstration of scientific theories.

Examples of literary texts

Actually, there are different examples of these writings that can be applied in this aspect, for example, legends, stories, that is, literary texts for children such as the story of Snow White or the wolf and the pigs. There is also that literary text that narrates events chronologically, this can be in the form of a crossword, novel or poetry.

There are also narrative literary texts, which are considered as a short literary text, for example, novels. Finally, literary recreational texts, an example of which are jokes, riddles, comics and proverbs.

Frequently Asked Questions about Literary Text

What are literary texts?

A literary text is a writing that seeks to convey emotions or thoughts to the reader.

What are the types of literary texts?

In total, there are four types of literary text classified into different aspects, the first has to do with narrative, the second with poetry, the third with drama, and the last is the essay.

What are the parts of a literary text?

Introduction, development, climax and conclusion, everything is part of the structure of the writing.

What are literary texts for?

It mainly has a poetic and aesthetic function, As a function Its main function is poetic or aesthetic, so figures of speech are used to provoke some feeling or reaction in the recipient. That is, the literary text does not have a referential function, as is the case with the non-literary text.

What are non-literary texts?

They are those whose purpose is to provide information, they are not developed to entertain but to inform.