In the works belonging to this genre, a narrator introduces an action or chain of events in which a series of characters, located in a given space and time, take part.
Literary narration distinguishes among other kind of narrations for recreating a fictional world. It is true that many of the events told in literary narrations are inspired by real life and some of them are even true.
Unlike the lyrical genre, which is focused in the description of the emotional or spiritual state of the poetic voice, an external view of the subject under discussion predominates in the narrative genre. The author is interested in the relationship between man and his environment; that is why the environment and the development of relationships between characters usually are essential elements of the narrative.
The third person is often used in narration. However, other grammatical persons can be used as well such as the first one, which is frequently used when the narrator is the main character or a secondary character of the story.
The narrative genre can be classified in subgenres:
- Historical poem: uses precious and original language. The motifs are historical.
- Parable: it is moralizing. They are of Christian origin and can be found in the Gospels.
- Fable: The characters are usually irrational beings; their nature is symbolic and dramatic. Versification is free. There is a moral to the fable.
- Novel: longer than any other narration, it is based on fictional but plausible facts.
- Legend: narrations based on facts considered to be historical or on popular, sort of plausible and authentic traditions.
- Short story: less extensive than a novel. Chapters develop in shorter time periods.
- Epic: Memorable and transcendent events for a country, people or human race. Historical events that do not claim the life of the poet. The characters act heroically.
- Epistles: narration through letters in which the author holds a direct dialogue with a second person.