Writing is a work of art that stood the test of time in recuperation, resilience, and reconciliation. Most of the writers transcended their boundaries of limitations. Undoubtedly, they reverberate and resonate to date as the greatest writers of all time. Well, did they pen those works foreseeing such greatness? In fact, they did not make it but created it, shattering all ideologies of culture, religion, and politics. Why do we refer to them as the greatest of all time? Did they surpass the limitations of time? Words did not flow from the nib of the pen but the rib of their experiences. The narratives of a boy in rags, women in ashes, molested girl, a cynical man in the cell, a flapping raven, etc., transported us to another world merged with fiction and reality. What did it mean to the world? It leaped beyond to be extraordinary from the ordinary pages of these writers. Furthermore, the greatness of the canon of the writings speaks through the pages of their fiction, poems, stories, and essays. This article shall throw a spotlight on a few great writers of all time. Before that, let’s split the alphabets G-R-E-A-T in the light of these writers.
- The Genuine representation of characters, settings, plot, and theme is evident in each work. It is intricately designed in exquisite structure, syntax, and style.
- Resplendent – Each day is unique, and life is concise. At the same time, there are times of sorrow and happiness. The greatest writers of all time deflected all negative vibes into positivity.
- Empathy- The feeling of empathy for situations, circumstances, choices, and options makes humans and other creatures live in symphony on this planet. ‘To feel from one’s shoes’ is a great skill held close to heart by few people.
- Ardor – It is important to share ideas on a meaningful life. Finding purpose even in the smallest moments of life showers bliss and hope for a good future. Artists, writers, painters, musicians live in this hope experimenting with their skills in each form of art.
- Transform- Time is transitory, and so is each of us. Our presence is important. It is wise to accept the purpose of our existence at the earliest. Time is a glimpse of our being in this expanse of the universe. The writer of all times had no expectations from anything or anyone. Taking life with gratitude as it comes is clearly exhibited in each sentence of their works.
Features stand tall in most of the writers in this article. Let’s examine the immortality for many small things done in a perfect way.
TONI MORRISON (February 18, 1931- August 5, 2019)
From a Blurred Vision to the Bright Bluest Eyes!
Toni Morrison smears her works with diligence. How do you recuperate from a life inundated with tremors? Morrison shows the way to redefine credibility from fragmentation. The novels range from longing, pain, friendship to amusement. Her first work, The Bluest Eye, caught less attention in the market in the form of a short story. Later, it grabbed the attention of readers as a novel. Sula, Beloved, Tar Baby portrays the black experience through intimate themes of fashion, color, creed, and culture. She wrote with determination at the slashing criticism of her works. Despite accolades in writing, her works established their roots in American Literature on realism. Her famous words ‘Time, it seems has no future’ hint at the vulnerability and uncertainty of time. This great novelist, editor, and essayist were credited with the Nobel Prize in literature in 1993. In short, her works got acknowledged for examining the brutality of racism. Besides the recognition, let’s remember the author as a human who overcame the precariousness of miseries with poise.
MARK TWAIN (November 30, 1835-April 21, 1910)
The Markings of the Great American Twine!
The twinkle in the eyes of Samuel Langhorne Clemens or Mark Twain says it all! The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and its sequel Adventures of Huckleberry Finn are unforgettable works. It is like a cake palpable for both the rich and the needy. He humorously cherishes his inefficiency at a handful of jobs as a river pilot, miner, and journalist. He outgrew as a great American Novelist to merge humor with atrocities prevalent in his society. The works are at the zenith of colloquial renditions through each of his characters. This, in turn, helped him establish himself as a prominent figure in American literature. Like all the other writers, no criticism, no biting remarks or comments could hinder this writer’s progress. He weaved chronological and non-chronological narration of events in the story plot with ease. The Mississippi River gains special attention and affection through Old Times on the Mississippi. The deprived, poverty-stricken lives of many people found a voice through the pages of The Innocent Abroad. Would he have dreamt that he would influence the lives of many even in the 21st Century?
HERMAN MELVILLE (1782-1832)
A Whaling Voyage in Writing
It requires much patience and cautiousness to transform a yard into a beautiful piece of cloth. What more could be said of a writer who embroidered his tapestry with intermittent threads of detailing, observation, and quality? Alan Melville or Herman Melville was a merchant and an importer by trade. Turbulence in education and family circumstances did not stop him from maintaining the standards of his works. Greatness adorned him when he turned every tangled situation into an elegant twirl. The tumultuous sea remained a mystery to him, especially during his long whaling projects. Exasperation experiences are evident in his works, such as Typee, Omoo, and the White- Jacket. He recognized the abandoned and disowned sections of the society. His writing career began when he shared his unique experiences at sea with his family. All the works are written with indescribable enthusiasm. Melville requires a special mention for his skills to compare and contrast from the unprivileged to the privileged. Moby Dick is a humongous sea of admiration interspersed with anxiety. His admiration for Nathaniel Hawthorne culminates in this great from American literature.
MAYA ANGELOU (April 4, 1928-May 28, 2014)
An Angel and Her Wings of Agony
‘There is no greater agony than bearing an untold story inside you’!
The above words of this writer cling and clatter with greatness. Maya Angelou clearly knew why the ‘caged birds sing’ with much sweetness of melody over transgressions. The world sings of her as the holder of several honorary degrees. How many of us know the degree to which she underwent shame and sufferings from childhood?
I know why the Caged Bird Sing is her first renowned work, which won her recognition as a writer. Aggression and regression can definitely confine an individual to obscurity. And, it requires a lot of guts to withstand the social fangs of threats and violence. Angelou expresses no tinge of embarrassment in shouting out loud the criminal mentality of her surroundings. Her ideas took form through initiatives as a civil activist. It is a tedious task to revamp a genre itself. Her seven autobiographies are examples of seven unique colors in a rainbow. It is lucid and vibrant in the black culture.
ALICE WALKER (born February 9, 1944)
The Power of Purple in the Dark!
Some personal and spiritual relationships fill Life with colors. A writer enjoys the privilege of rectifying discoloration in life. A great writer also travels in the wonderland of the famous character Alice to find color in the darkest corners. One of Walker’s distinctive features is the ability to convey a point in a subtle non-oppressive style. The Color Purple and The Chicken Chronicles is a reforming experience of black women. Walker is a fossilized talent of generations of strong and struggling women as her mother and grandmother. She reformulated the word ‘Womanist’ that emphasized race, color, and social perspectives. The colors purple and pink are inevitable at the name of Alice Walker. Her active participation in the Gaza Freedom March in code Pink was a message to the people of Israel and Egypt to co-exist in harmony. Black color or a woman of color took new forms with this activist, short story writer, and poet.
EDGAR ALLAN POE (January 19, 1809- October 7, 1849)
The Tormented Talent!
Hunger strikes poverty. The hunger of a writer can never be satiated. We feel the goosebumps on reading a writer whose works were his only breadwinner. Edgar Allan Poe was never satisfied with just one genre and one theme. Here is a person who invented Science fiction in its rawness, mystery, and absurdity. Apparently, his works entail dreary, somber, and macabre elements. The writing bug bit him on the publication of Tamerlane and Other Poems. Unfortunately, his assimilation with writings forced him to part ways with his father, Allan. The partial success in serving the United States Army urged him to write his first amateur poems’ collection. All the experience had a deep connection with the greatness of his writing graph. Depiction of death, decomposition, and decay questioned presumptions and pretensions in life. Poe contributed to literary criticism with works such as the known essay ‘The Poetic Principle.’ A discipline of relying on the specific is predominant in work.
WALT WHITMAN (May 31, 1819-March 26, 1892)
He is America!
Senses play a vital role in the readers. The ability to feel, touch, see, hear and taste is consistent in Walt Whitman’s works. He responded less on being lampooned for the display of sensuality in the initial set of his works. Controversial works are remembered for their content and creativity. Being the father of free verse did not permit him to hang freely on just one concept. He favored both Transcendentalism and Realism in most of his works. It gave a special flavor to the influential poets in the canon of American literature. No scholar of history can escape Whitman’s works, which meticulously describes the American civilization with accuracy. Leaves of Grass is one of his most acclaimed works. Experience as a publisher, editor, and distributor inspired him to begin his own daily Long-Islander. Complexities and rivalries witnessed Whitman’s towering fame as a distinguished writer with an appraisal from several renowned writers.
SYLVIA PLATH (October 27, 1932- February 11, 1963)
The Confessions of a Woman, Wife, and Writer!
The worth of this poet never goes unnoticed in American Literature. A beautiful soul gone so soon would confess the dreading life of Sylvia Plath. Plath floundered with so many thoughts rising into flames of outbursts through her poetry. The Colossus and other Poems, Ariel, The Bell-Jar, Daddy, etc., thrive with a young writer’s promises. Her eccentricities, lamentation, disappointment, and frustration found a place in her works as a young woman’s confessions. After several failed attempts, she resigned from life on her own accord. Did she more to confess to the world?
Driven by ambition and success, she felt like a numbed creature suffocating at the hands of inexplicable wrath. Her uncomfortable status as a daughter and a wife added to the horror of her death. She surrendered to depression during her college years and wished to stay thus at the disposal of loneliness. Her persistent battle with her own mind conceived such remarkable works in the list of great writers.
JACK KEROUAC (March 12, 1922- October 21, 1969)
A Jazzy Journey with Jack
A spontaneous style with beatitudes of speed circumscribes this great writer. Jack Kerouac’s inclination to jazz, politics, religion, travel, and briskness won him a special place with youngsters’ age. Apart from being a writer, Kerouac enjoyed the notoriety of a celebrity. He was fast and frivolous with his passion for traveling with his companions of the Beat Generation. The radical and rash ideas on politics and society gave him into gambling and drinking. With a short record of works, he was able to uplift his readers’ emotions and rhythm. Much of his works got printed post-death. On the Road is a depiction of real-life events and his acquaintances. He drew the pitch, rhythm, and beat of his words from Jazz. It gives a special feel of the ruthless and meaningless events of life. The Dharma Bums, Visions of Cody, Visions of Gerard explored the concept of existence. This writer is remembered for his short life traveling unabashedly with excitement.
ERNEST HEMINGWAY (July 21, 1899-July 2, 1961)
The Art of an Earnest Writer!
There is less competition in being a good human being, and this makes one great! The works of Ernest Hemingway is a stack of adventures, romance, and fiction. His works are reminders of the unwavering faith of an indomitable spirit packed with shock and bruises. The Sun Also Rises, For Whom the Bell Tolls, Farewell to Arms are exemplars of his life at the war front. Wounds mattered less to Hemingway. He stood tough and stiff at the unprecedented perils of a soldier’s life. His famous concept of the ‘tip of an iceberg’ leaves a fascinating space in his mysterious characterization and motifs. The modern world stood in awe of his notions on the overt presentation of a story plot. The Old Man and the Sea is a commendable work of motivation that surpasses the borders of age, energy, and will power. He relentlessly fought in truth amidst the chaos with simplicity. The works are filled with the power of bulletproof strides in this morbid world. Probably this is the greatest gift that he could leave for the upcoming generation!
Prolific works and awards adorned the greatness of all the writers. The list of greatest writers is endless. The sacrifice, dedication, and devotion to the art were devoid of loopholes. Their mortal remains rest in peace in eternal slumber in the graveyards. Their immortal works have a lasting impact on the contemporary world. Assuredly Pen is mightier than the sword. Let this piece of the article be another articulation of veneration to all past, present, and future writers.