What does de facto mean in literature?


Sep 30, 2022

Reading Time: 3 Min

When used in literary contexts, the term de facto refers to something that exists in fact, even if it is not officially recognized. In other words, de facto literary elements are those that are commonly accepted as part of a work of literature, even if they are not expressly mentioned or defined by the author.

For example, most readers would assume that a novel has a beginning, middle, and end, even if the author never explicitly states this. Similarly, readers would generally expect a work of fiction to tell a story, even if the author never explicitly says that this is the purpose of the work. These are both examples of de facto literary elements.

De facto literary elements are often contrasted with de jure literary elements, which are those that are explicitly defined or mentioned by the author. For example, if an author includes a character list in a work of fiction, then readers would consider that list to be a de jure element of the story.

It’s important to note that de facto literary elements are not necessarily universally accepted; different readers may have different ideas about which elements are de facto. However, there are some elements that are generally considered to be de facto, such as the aforementioned beginning, middle, and end, or the idea that a work of fiction should tell a story.

Other related questions:

What does de facto mean literally?

De facto is a Latin phrase that means “in fact.”

What’s an example of de facto?

The de facto standard for web browsers is currently Google Chrome.

What is the use of defacto?

There is no definitive answer to this question as the term “defacto” can have different meanings in different contexts. In general, however, “defacto” is used to describe something that exists in practice, even if it is not officially recognized or sanctioned.


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