April 21, 2012
genre (noun)
\ZHAHN-ruh\ Hear it!
What does it mean?
: a particular type or category of literary or artistic composition
How do you use it?
In English class last year, Cam studied the literary genre of the short story, and even tried writing a short story of his own.
Are you a word wiz?

To really understand what "genre" means, it's good to know some examples of genres. Which of the following do you think is one example of a genre?

It's no joke -- answer C, "comedy," is the one! Comedy is a genre that most of us are familiar with. One definition of "comedy" is "the genre of dramatic literature dealing with the comic or with the serious in a light or satirical manner." Its opposite, "tragedy," can be defined as "a literary genre of tragic dramas." Art forms other than literature have their own genres as well. The word "genre" comes from French, where it means "kind, sort" or "gender." French "genre" traces to Latin "genus," which means "kind" or "gender," as well as "birth" or "race."
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