Teaching English literature, I am often inquired about the scope of this subject. Usually, people think it does nothing more than help students learn English Language, as if getting familiar with speaking and writing skills in English is the only decent scope the subject can offer. While on the other hand, the department of English at university level has resolved to discourage candidates who want admission thinking that the subject is a ticket to qualifying CSS. This change we owe to the remarkable efforts of HEC Pakistan, over the years, in popularising research amongst teachers and students through attractive scholarship opportunities. The powerful potion of Well’s narrative jolts a person to revisit his choices in life, his bargain for the ‘professionally perfect’ world at the cost of his emotional stability and self-contentment What does English Literature or any Literature contribute to the society, if scaling up its scope in terms of qualifying competition exams or learning a language is poverty of approach? If we want people to know the significance of Literature, we need to bring about a paradigm shift in the way they live their life as well as design their children’s. Over the years, the dominant focus of education has been on the development of cognition and literacy of mind. Sciences have remained widely popular for defining one’s academic and professional choices. But research conducted over the past two decades has shown that EQ (Emotional Quotient) is far more important for being successful than IQ. Daniel Goleman’s “Emotional Intelligence: Why It Can Matter More Than IQ” (1995) has enabled the world to recognise the importance of going beyond the traditional types of intelligence for improving the success competency of people. Emotional Intelligence is a two-way process commanding intrapersonal and interpersonal intelligence. It empowers a person to get the best not only out of himself but of others.Higher EQ in a person is not just based on recognising one’s emotions and those of others but to intelligently use this emotional understanding to guide one’s thinking and behavior in order to reap mutual benefits. We hardlyrecogniseEI as a measure ofintelligence, let alone realise its significance in life. The ever-alarming number of unhappy people attests to this. All the negative emotions such as intolerance, impatience, frustration, anger, jealousy and self-pity represent marginal or no emotional intelligence in a person. We see people driving mad at themselves or others only because they barely recognise and understand the emotional drive of their own actions and others’ actions. When a person has no fear or emotional insecurity to hold him back, he is better able to strike a common ground with others. He becomes independent enough to make interdependence possible; this is what Stephen Covey calls the highest stage of maturity that only few people enjoy Why do we bring children story books glorifying positive emotions such as love, peace, strength of character? Obviously, weas parents focus on emotional development thinking of our child’s early years as important in forming his/herpersonality. Some years onwards as the child grows up, there occurs a dramatic shift in our focus from emotional literacy to cognitive development of a child. This switch of priority becomes a permanent condition of a child’s education all through his life. Hecan no longer look back to his childhood fascinations, given the pressures of time and ever-growing competitive exigencies of life. But the childhood memory keeps beaming at him like the memory of ‘the door in the wall’ in H.G. Well’s story. The powerful potion of Well’s narrative jolts a person to revisit his choices in life, his bargain for the ‘professionally perfect’ world at the cost of his emotional stability and self-contentment. How the sciences and the yardstick of the world’s future and progress have robbed a man of his emotional health! The question is: Why do we have to rip our contact with childhood preoccupations in order to step into the world of ‘maturity’ and the responsibilities it bears along with it? This fetish for ‘success’ has dehumanised us. The whole system of our life is laid on the win/lose approach. We are only trained to perceive our win when someone else loses. Even siblings and friends are considered rivals. Unfortunately, it’s the parents who provide their children this battleground of false competition. Sometimes, we observe the younger kids suffer from inferiority complexesand resentment when parents denigrate them for why they haven’t taken after their successful elder sibling. Moreover, hypocrisy is the new religion we ceremoniously follow. It feeds on the oxygen we inhale and sucks not only the life out of us but of our relationships also. That is why, not even blood relations exude life today. There hides a ‘selfish need’ in the façade of relationships. Higher EQ in a person is not just based on recognising one’s emotions and those of others but to intelligently use this emotional understanding to guide one’s thinking and behavior in order to reap mutual benefits. We hardly recognise EI as a measure of intelligence, let alone realise its significance in life. The ever-alarming number of unhappy people attests to this This slow poisoning of life can only be reverted when we review our priorities, when we stop being paranoid with what others possess, when our older version of self is the only benchmark to measure success, when we begin to practice the win/win approach, when we stop rejoicing the failure of others and embrace all flawed humankind including ourselves with the object to “understand” and “influence”. Such a boost to life is possible only when we begin to feed the significant emotional self that has hitherto suffered censure and derision. What is Literature? It is the best therapy to recover emotional health. Reading books expands the horizon of recognising, understanding and impacting the emotional life of those our health and happiness largely depends on. Composure is the finest fruit Literature cultivates in man. When a person has no fear or emotional insecurity to hold him back, he is better able to strike a common ground with others. He becomes independent enough to make interdependence possible; this is what Stephen Covey calls the highest stage of maturity that only few people enjoy. This synergy of emotional energy in an interdependent environment releases an unimaginable force counted for achieving excellence in career and in life as a whole. The writer is a lecturer at the Department of English at GC University, Lahore. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org Published in Daily Times, December 4th 2017.