For various reasons, the canon of literary works to be read in school has been criticized in recent years. The status of the canon, both as a concept with hierarchical connotations and as a particular set of texts, has been affected by developments in literary scholarship as well as by political views and new educational goals. However, teaching literature without the regulative idea of a canon is not very satisfactory. If we wish to select a limited number of literary texts to be taught in secondary schools, some consensus would be necessary about the functions of literature as well as about didactic goals, which in turn are related to concepts of morality and political exigencies. For instance, one may decide to teach not only a national , but to introduce a European perspective by incorporating works from abroad into the curriculum, if necessary in translation. In view of the fact that Europe is a multicultural community, it is of long-term interest to guarantee the pluriformity of any school canon of literature.
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