Universal Literature in 60 seconds
Talking with persons from different countries about the famous - famous -ultra famous books, I decided to make a list of them and to put it here. For sure, there are many more and I would like to add more interesting books in the future. Please note that this is just my perspective and my personal experience and I didn't want to disadvantage any author/book/country.
Antiquity – Ones of the most ancient civilization, Egyptian and Sumerian(current Irak) have the credits for the first writings. In Europe, for antiquity the most representative are: Homer - Ancient Greece("The Iliad and The Odyssey") and from the Roman Empire - Vergilius and Cicero.
China – With writings from early times of humankind, diverse and well represented during the history. Confucius and Lao Zi.
Arabic - The most popular novels are “One Thousand and One Nights” which contains a collection of stories like "Aladdin and the Magic Lamp".
French literature is enormous, enriched during the centuries, from romance to science fiction. Honoré de Balzac, Voltaire, Jean de La Fontaine, Victor Hugo, Jules Verne.
Russian art is complex, but I would like to mention the two kings of intrigues and mistery of 19th century, F. Dostoevsky with "Crime and Punishment" and "The Idiot" and the other giant of literature Leo Tolstoy, with "War and Peace" and "Anna Karenina".
Italy and art are almost synonyms, with music, sculpture, paintings and literature. Dante Alighieri with "Divine Comedy" is considered the most important poem of the Middle Age, not only in Italian literature.
Iberic literature: The most representative from Spain is Miguel de Cervantes(16th century) with "Don Quixote" and from Portugal the writer Luís Vaz de Camões, from the same period, with “Os Lusíadas”.
British literature has the superstars W. Shakespeare(poet and playwright) and Charles Dickens author of "Oliver Twist", "David Copperfield", "Great Expectations" etc.
From Ireland authors Oscar Wilde and James Joyce.
German Literature is more known for its philosophy, but also for the stories for children, like "Hansel and Gretel" and “Rapunzel” that made Brothers Grimm very famous.
United States Hard to choose and I will just be subjective: Ernest Hemingway with "For Whom the Bell Tolls" and "The Old Man and the Sea". My childhood favorite Mark Twain with "The Adventures of Tom Sawyer" (1875) and "Adventures of Huckleberry
Indian stories have influenced many other literature and it is a beautiful mixture between philosophy and fiction. I would like to mention R. Tagore with a Nobel Prize for Literature in 1913.
South America Of course, Gabriel Garcia Marquez (Colombia) is the "Love in the Time of Cholera" (a popular movie has made based on this book) but also Jorge Luis Borges from Argentina. The most popular is Paulo Coelho(Brazil), with books translated all over the world.