• The essay is a short literary composition in
prose dealing with a single matter usually
from a personal point of view. Thus, it is
revelatory of the author’s state , opinions,
prejudices, moods, and , in general, his
• Essays may either be formal or informal but
there are more specific subdivisions
• Reflective Essays are serious
and dignified and usually employ
aphorisms, i.e., wisdom couched
in memorable sentences.
• Narrative or story essay make
use of an incident to illustrate an
idea or a theme.
• Descriptive essay has some narrative
elements as well as color, vividness,
and realistic portrayals.
• Biographical essay sketches life or
presents character analysis.
• Nature essay attempts to picture the
world of God’s creation and may do so in
a graphic, pictorial vein or a more
thoughtful, philosophical manner.
• Critical Essay includes biographical
criticism, literary criticism, and book
reviews. It is a record of an analytical
mind weighing the virtues and faults
of a literary piece, for instance,
which it fully understands.
• Periodical essays are generally
published in periodicals, hence, they
are also called journalistic.
• Didactic essays enforce a moral and,
therefore, the tone is serious and
• Is a literary production of man’s
imagination finding shape in
stories of people or events.
Types of Fiction
• Prose Allegory is a prose form in which
the characters, ideas, and actions stand
for something else or for a system of
ideas with meaning implied. Concrete
characters are personifications of
Example of Prose Allegory
• > Fable is a short allegorical tale conveying a
moral or principle of behavior. The characters
are usually animals talking like human beings
but keeping their animals traits. Often, the
moral is appended in the form of a proverb in
the form of a proverb.
> Myths are traditional tales common
to the members of a tribe,race,or
nation usually involving the
supernatural and serving to explain
natural phenomena or suggest a
religious or moral truth.
> Legends are stories of some wonderful
events popularly believed to have some
historical basis and passed down through
• Prose romances are types of stories
in which some supernatural or
magical events , fantastic, and
Example of Prose Romances
> Fairy Tales, which make use of folklore motifs,
commonplace expressions, and typical themes
are those which develop from stock characters
such as cruel king, cruel stephmother,naughty
sister, substituted bride , magic, supernatural
changes, and restorations.
> Fairy tales, once the strange element
in the situation is accepted, fairy tales
assume a reality of their own .Virtue is
rewarded and fairy tales always end
• Folk tales are part of folklore (traditions
transmitted through memory and
practice rather than by the printage
• A folk tales easily pass from language
and spread all over the world; hence
they are sometimes called “
• Are stories in which human vices and
follies are held up to ridicule.
Example of Prose satires
> Fabliau (Plural: Fabliaux) is a short, amusing
tale often bawdy or obscene, cynically and slyly
satirical directed against women, the clergy, and
marriage. The humor arises from the plot, an
intrigue, or practical joke told in a rapid
succession of events that form a single episode.
Among standard characters are the jealous,
stupid husband, the braggart, and the unfaithful
wife. Boccaccio’s Decameron contains brilliant
illustrations of this type.
• Are prose narratives on a large scale (book length) and
can be divided into three types, fantasy,love,and
adventure novels. They are further broken down into
such varieties as:
• Epistolary detective religious
• Picaresque science-fiction sociological
• Gothic naturalistic romantic
• Utopian psychological sentimental
• Western stream-of- consciousness surrealistic
The novel is a dominant literary form at present, both in
quality and quantity.
• Is a prose narrative of limited length which
must have characterization,unity,cumulative
interest, climax, and a resolution.
• In a less exclusive sense, short stories should
include the earliest forms of short narratives-stories
of gods and demons,
anecdotes,fables,mythical tales, lives of saints
(hagiography),parables, and folk tales.
• Are prose narratives that are intermediate
between the short story and the novels.
• It is about 50 to 150 ordinary pages long, but
no exact limits can be given as to length. It is
more elaborate than a short story but can be
read in a single sitting and can produce a
single, concentrated effect. Hemingway’s The
Old Man and the Sea (1952) is an excellent
example of a novelette
• is a literary work written in dialogue and
intended for presentation by actors. The
essence of drama is the make –believe by
which an actor impersonates a character of
the play. Dramas of any period have their
different sets of conventions and the playgoer
must be conscious of them. The same
divisions under poetic plays apply to prose
Examples of Prose Drama
Comedy of manners
Comedia del l’ arte
Special types of prose drama
• Closet drama which , though written
in dramatic form, is intended for
private reading rather than stage
• Tragicomedy is a combination of the
elements of tragedy and comedy
• Problem plays are neither comedies nor
tragedies but deal with middle –class life
• Comedy of manners is a type of play
which satirizes the extreme of
fashion and manners- the acquire
follies of a highly sophisticated
• Comedia de l’ arte was a type of comedy
developed in 16th –century Italy and its
essential characteristics was that it was based
on a ploy (scenario) outlined in advance, but
the dialogue was improvised during
performance. Characters who wore masks
were stock types as the silly old man, the
pedant, the lover,etc.
Non – fiction prose types:
Biography and Autobiography
Letters (Epistles), Diaries, Journals
Scientific and Current Publications