belles-lettres love

Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun plural Literature regarded for its aesthetic value rather than its didactic or informative content.
  • noun plural Light, stylish writings, usually on literary or intellectual subjects.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Polite or elegant literature: a word of somewhat indefinite application, including poetry, fiction, and other imaginative literature, and the studies and criticism connected therewith; literature regarded as a form of fine art.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun plural Polite or elegant literature; the humanities; -- used somewhat vaguely for literary works in which imagination and taste are predominant.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun literary works valued more for their aesthetic qualities than for any informative or educational content

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun creative writing valued for esthetic content
  • noun creative writing valued for esthetic content

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[French : belles, fine + lettres, letters, literature.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

French

Examples

  • It has also given us some wild cards, unexpected treats that belong on the shelf once labeled belles-lettres but now more commonly known (thanks to Dave Eggers's annual paperback anthologies) as nonrequired reading.

    Book Review Roundup

  • It has also given us some wild cards, unexpected treats that belong on the shelf once labeled belles-lettres but now more commonly known (thanks to Dave Eggers's annual paperback anthologies) as nonrequired reading.

    Book Review Roundup

  • This is the mistake of believing that experience can be absorbed, both understood and expressed, wholly in literature; and in literature, moreover, which is reduced to belles-lettres prose fiction, poetry, drama, and literary criticism.

    Archive 2009-09-01

  • London's The Call of the Wild and White Fang are listed as books for youth whereas Martin Eden is belles-lettres or "fine literature."

    A Bibliographical Essay

  • This is the mistake of believing that experience can be absorbed, both understood and expressed, wholly in literature; and in literature, moreover, which is reduced to belles-lettres prose fiction, poetry, drama, and literary criticism.

    9/11 and the literary fallacy

  • The standard by which all of belles-lettres are to be judged.

    Crit List 7: Let The Parade Of Sleaze Begin -- The Fungus and Fear And Loathing In Las Vegas

  • American scholarly trends, steering their students away from popular pulp literature to belles-lettres.

    A Bibliographical Essay

  • When a few hardy critics even write about London's stories, they carefully avoid the "kiddy lit" and focus exclusively on London's belles-lettres: Adventure, Burning Daylight, John Barleycorn, The

    A Bibliographical Essay

  • Throughout her life, Bracha Habas sought also to engage in belles-lettres.

    Bracha Habas.

  • The standard by which all of belles-lettres are to be judged.

    Archive 2009-04-05

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