This introductory volume provides an overview of the history of Literature as a cultural concept, and reflects on the contemporary nature, place and function of what the literary might mean for us today. Literature:
* offers a concise history of the canonic concept of 'literature' from its earliest origins
* illustrates the kinds of theoretical issues which are currently invoked by the term 'literary'
* provides a definition of the 'literary' for the twenty-first century
With Literature Peter Widdowson provides a thought-provoking essay on the contemporary relevance of the 'literary' for students.