English Composition, Lesson 13. Relation of Imagination to Experience
by William C. Michael
To complete the objectives of this lesson, complete the following tasks:
- Study the lesson for mastery.
- Complete the lesson assessment.
All ideas are based upon and spring from experience, and the imagination merely places them in new combinations.
For the purpose of this book, however, it is convenient to distinguish those themes that relate real events as they actually occurred from those themes that relate events that did not happen.
That body of writing which we call “literature” is largely composed of works of an imaginative character, and for this reason it has sometimes been carelessly assumed that in order to write one must be possessed of an excellent imagination. Such an assumption loses sight of the fact that imaginative writings cover but one small part of the whole field.
The production of literature is the business of a few, while every one has occasion every day to express ideas.
It is evident that by far the greater part of the ideas we are called upon to express do not require the use of the imagination, but exercises in writing themes of an imaginative character are given here because there is pleasure in writing such themes and because practice in writing them will aid us in stating clearly and effectively the many ideas arising from our daily experiences.