According to the fine folks at Pop Chart Labs, there’s a theory that genres exist for the benefit of bookstores and at the expense of readers. Similar to a Las Vegas casino, booksellers manipulate the environment to lure you toward the money makers—I imagine librarians will be the first to object to this theory. So Pop Chart decided to look beyond these commonly accepted distinctions to see how the genres relate and where books belong based on content rather than commerce. “We went in with the idea that we were looking not at commercial distinctions, but instead peering deep into the text of the book, at almost the cellular level,” said Rachel Mansfield of Pop Chart.

The approach created some difficult decisions and surprising results: The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe found its home under the “Christian” genre, rather than the expected fantasy. Explore the chart and discover what kind of books you really like. The poster is available for $29.

literary genre map

14 Responses

  1. INFOGRAPHIC: A Map of the Literary Genres | M.C. Tuggle, Writer

    […] ElectricLit has a downloadable graph it calls a map of all the genres. A few may confuse — I’ve never thought of Southern Gothic as a branch of horror, and some may question putting C.S. Lewis’ The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe under Christian rather than fantasy (Christian novels would reject the magic in both Lewis’ and Tolkien’s works). But you’ll have a blast getting lost in this maze of literary geography. Enjoy! […]

  2. April

    120 Days of Sodom is under Romance? Hmmm…. I haven’t read it but the synopsis sounds horrifying.

    • Rob

      Well, it is under Erotic > Romance tho… But I can’t believe they missed placing any Edgar Allan Poe books.

  3. Jam

    Just as I near completion of redecoration, I find something that will be it’s cohesion.

  4. Lagniappe | Book Notes Plus

    […] And Then There Were None, “hard boiled” like The Maltese Falcon, and many more subcategories.  An “infographic,” compliments of Electric Lit, gives you all the information you’ll need (and some recommendations) […]


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