In the contribution which follows, Collett B. Dilworth, Jr., of the English Department at East Carolina University, gets to the very heart of why literature is taught in schools. He broaches the question of how literary study relates to the basic skills, and he ties his rationale in with questions of accountability and its handmaiden, competency testing. Probably the heart of Dilworth's argument is in his statement, "The student of literature is not primarily looking for information, s/he is looking for experience."
Shuman, R. B., & Dilworth, C. B. (1979). Professional Concerns. Reading Horizons, 19 (4). Retrieved from http://scholarworks.wmich.edu/reading_horizons/vol19/iss4/14