Results 1 to 2 of 2

    • Join Date: Jul 2006
    • Posts: 37

    tense in literature

    I think when we write an essay about literature, we use 'present tense' no matter if the literature itself is in past tense. But for example, "Ben suddenly recalled his high school life. When he was in the ninth grade, he was very popular. But now, he was not. He was such an ordinary man. No one would notice him." Then, if I want to say his past, should I use past tense to make a contrast with present tense, so that reader will understand which is Ben's past life, and which is his present? Let's say: Ben always remembers his glory in high school, he was/is a such popular student. Teachers loved him/love him. However, now he is not well-liked by his boss or co-workers.

  1. Editor,
    English Teacher
    • Member Info
      • Native Language:
      • British English
      • Home Country:
      • UK
      • Current Location:
      • Laos

    • Join Date: Nov 2002
    • Posts: 60,656

    Re: tense in literature

    When events occur before the point of the narrative you are dealing with, use the past tense IMO.

Similar Threads

  1. present perfect tense & present perfect continuous tense
    By *zaizai~love* in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 30-Oct-2008, 23:06
  2. Specific question about Present Continuous/Simple Tense
    By learner2007 in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 05-Aug-2007, 18:43
  3. present perfect tense
    By svartnik in forum Ask a Teacher
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 15-Dec-2006, 13:16
  4. Do we have future tense?
    By shun in forum Teaching English
    Replies: 1
    Last Post: 07-Oct-2003, 17:06


Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts