Teaching English Literature in Rural India: Issues and Prospects

Pritam Singh
Assistant Professor. Seth NMT Govt. Girls College, Bagar Road, Jhunjhunu
The English brought English to India to make it easier for them to govern this vast country. Gradually the language got prominence all over the world and hence, in India, it gained wide prominence. Along with the spread of English, English literature also gained wide popularity and place in our educational system. When an Indian student learns English literature, he does not inherit ideas, beliefs, values, and knowledge of the English culture. The teacher and the learner both have no share in the culture and tradition of English people or people where English is spoken as a mother tongue or a native language. Learners are unknown to the literary traditions also. English literature teaching poses serious problems to the teachers as they find it difficult to relate to the traditions, culture, values, and mythology of European countries. They cannot relate the emotions, happenings, and situations to the Indian students. Hence the students feel alienated and cannot comprehend the real meaning of the given text. Due to this geographical, cultural, and social difference, the students cannot relate to the literary texts and find it uninteresting. The teachers need to focus primarily on teaching language to enhance the comprehensive skills of the students to grasp literature. The goal of English literature teaching should be to increase proficiency when the English language is being used across India. It concerns intelligibility, comprehensibility, and interpretability. It should lead to international communication through interactions and a better understanding of the English literature at large. Key Words: Literature, language, culture, mythology, teaching, vocabulary, communication.