fiction | types of fiction

Fiction | Types Of Fiction


The word fiction comes from the Latin fictus (“invented”), derived from the verb fingiere (“pretend”). It is the name we give to the artistic genre opposed to the “non-fiction” of essays , documentaries, chronicles or reports , which adhere as closely as possible to reality.

On the contrary, the main characteristic of fiction is the free recreation of the real , in a similar way to what happens in dreams, creating entire worlds different from ours, for example, or trying to answer what would have happened if such or what event in history did or did not occur.

The possibility of creating and sharing imaginations and daydreams, that is, of creating fictions with the mere objective of entertaining oneself and mentally living other people’s experiences , is a characteristic and extremely important of the human species . Historians such as the Israeli Yuval Noah Harari (1976-) consider that this is one of the traits responsible for our evolutionary success, which allowed us complex levels of social organization through the imaginary.

Be that as it may, the ability to create and tell fictions, along with the mastery of fire, the incest taboo and ceremonial burial, constitutes one of the typical traits of humanity . It accompanies us from the primitive horde to the present day.

Furthermore, it has been the subject of frequent reflection among philosophers, thinkers, writers and artists, from Plato (c. 427-347 BC) and Aristotle (384-322 BC) in classical antiquity , to modern authors such as Walter Benjamin (1892-1940) or Susan Sontag (1933-2004).



Fiction can be classified from many points of view, especially considering the type of artistic resources used to create it. Thus, one can speak of literary fiction (the novel , the short story ), cinematographic fiction, cartoon fiction or even popular imaginary.

Another very common way of classifying fictional productions has to do with the type of possible world they stage, compared to the real world. Thus, we have:

Realistic : Whose possible world is governed by more or less the same rules as the real world, or that at least tries to make itself as indistinguishable as possible from the real world.

Fantasy : Whose possible world openly breaks with the laws of the real world, allowing supernatural forces such as magic, ghosts, superpowers, etc., since the fantastic world is governed by its own autonomous rules.

Science : Originally a narrative subgenre, Science Fiction has become one of the main ways of imagining in contemporary times, characterized by an exaggeration or extrapolation of scientific discourse , to build fictional scenarios, endowed with a certain scientific explanatory framework. In other words, without scientific discourse or a certain scientific point of view, it would be fantastic fictions.

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