"Realism is the rage of Caliban seeing his own face in a glass"
Public DomainCaliban - Credit: William Hogarth

Realism tells it like it is, depicting a subject without exaggeration, embellishment or interpretation. For authors, this means describing everyday and banal activities. Truths are not masked by style, romance or fantasy. Authors who used this realist style included George Elliot, Gustave Flaubert, William Dean Howells, Guy de Maupassant and Émile Zola. The trend began with 19th-century French literature.

Caliban is the mistreated, deformed servant of Prospero in Shakespeare's The Tempest, described as a freckled whelp, hag-born, not honour'd with a human shape.