Weinstein on Literature

The great virtue of literature (of art in general) is that it does not truck with abstract data, such as the dates of battles or elections, the numbers of this or that, or the rules or laws of this or that. One could argue that such “data” are rarely real for us, in any experiential sense, and that the business of art is precisely to translate data and information into living circumstance, to turn fact into fiction. It may seem that such a procedure moves away from reality, but the opposite is true. Facts start to live when we see them as part of experience, even fictive experience.
- Arnold Weinstein, in his guidebook to Classics of American Literature
Written on February 21, 2016