LITERARY TERMS

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Natalie
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133851
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LITERARY TERMS
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2012-02-08 20:08:51
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lit terms
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lit terms
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  1. allegory
    narrative form in which characters and actions have meanings outside themselves; characters are usually personifications of abstract qualities
  2. alliteration
    repetition ofinitial consonant sounds or any vowel sounds within a formal grouping, such as a poetic line or stanza, or in close proximity in prose
  3. allusion
    figure of speech which makes a brief, even casual reference to a historical or literary figure, event, or object to create a resonance in the reader or to apply a symbolic meaning to the character or object of which the allusion consists
  4. anachronism
    use of historically inaccurate details in a text
  5. anadiplosis
    repitition of the last word of one clause at the beginning of the next clause
  6. analogy
    comparison of two things that are alike in some respects
  7. anaphora
    regular repetition of the same word or phrase at the beginning of successive phrases or clauses
  8. aphorism
    concise statement designed to make a point or issustrate a commonly held belief
  9. apology
    used as a synonym for teh word defense
  10. apostrophe
    figure of speech in which a person, thing, or abstract quality is addressed as if present
  11. asyndeton
    practice of omitting conjunctions between words, phrases, or clauses
  12. antithesis
    juxtaposition of sharply contrasting ideas in balanced or parallel words or phrases
  13. polysyndeton
    repetition of conjunctions in close succession
  14. bildungsroman
    novel or story whose theme is the moral or psychological growth of the main character
  15. catharsis
    purification or cleansing of the spirit through the emotions of pity and terror as a witness to a tragedy
  16. chiasmus
    figure of speech by which the order of terms in the first of parallel clauses is reversed in the second
  17. colloquial
    ordinary language; the vernacular
  18. connotation
    what is implied by a word
  19. denotation
    dictionary definition of a word; direct and specific meaning
  20. deus ex machina
    as in greek theater, the use of an artificial device or contrived solution to solve a difficult situtation, usually introcuded suddenly and unexpectedly
  21. diction
    author's choice of words to convey a tone or effect
  22. didactic
    intended for teaching or to teach a moral lesson
  23. doppelganger
    ghostly counterpart of a living person or alter ego
  24. epigraph
    quote set at the beginning of a literary work or at its divisions to set the tone or suggest a theme
  25. epiphany
    sudden or intuitive insight or perception into the reality or essential meaning of something usually brought on by a simple or common occurrence or experience
  26. epistrophe
    repetition of a word or words as the end of two or more successive verses, clauses or sentences
  27. epistolary
    piece of literature contained in or carried on by letters
  28. epitaph
    piece or writing in praise of a deceased person
  29. euphemism
    substitution of a milder or less direct expression for one that is harsh or blunt
  30. eulogy
    spech or writing in praise of a person or thing; oration in honor of a deceased person
  31. foil
    person or thing that makes another seem better by contrast
  32. foreshadow
    hint at or present things to come in a story or play
  33. hamartia
    aristotle's term for the main character's tragic flaw or error in judgment
  34. hyperbole
    overstatement characterized by exaggerated language
  35. imagery
    sensory details in a work; use of figurative language to evoke a feeling, call to mind an idea, or describe an object
  36. hubris
    self pride
  37. in medias res
    refers to opening a story in the middle of the action, requiring filling in past details by expositon or flashback
  38. irony
    situation or statement characterized by significant difference between what is expected or understood and what actually happens or what is meant
  39. verbal irony
    character says one thing and means another
  40. dramatic irony
    audience knows something character does not know
  41. situational irony
    opposite of what we expect occurs
  42. isocolon
    parallel structure in which the parallel elements are similar not only in grammatical structure, but also in length
  43. litote
    form of understatement in which the negative of the contrary is used to achieve emphasis and intensity
  44. metaphor
    implicit comparison or identification of one thing with another unlike itself without the use of a verbal signal such as like or as
  45. metonymy
    figure of speech that uses the name of one thing to name or designate something
  46. motif
    recurrent device, formula, or situation that often serves as a signal for the appearance of a character or event
  47. oxymoron
    figure of speech that combines two apparently contradictory elements
  48. paradox
    statement that seems contradictory but is actually ture
  49. parallelism
    recurrent syntactical similarity where several parts of a sentence or several sentences are expressed alike to show that the ideas in the pars or sentences equal in imporance. adds balance, rhythm and clarity to the sentence
  50. realism
    literary practice of attempting to describe life and nature without idealization and with attention to detail
  51. satire
    literary style used to make fun or or ridicule an idea or human vice or weakness
  52. symbolism
    person, place, thing, event, or pattern in a literary work that designates itself and at the same time figurataively represents something else. Use of one object to suggest another hidden object or idea
  53. synecdoche
    figure of speech in which a part signifies the whole
  54. syntax
    the way words are put together to form phrases, clauses and sentences. It is sentence structurea nd how it influences the way a reader perceives a piece of writing
  55. tone
    attitude a literary work takes towards its subject and theme. Reflects narrator's attitude
  56. trope
    use of a word in a figurative sense with a decided change or extension in its literal meaning
  57. understatement
    deliberate expression of an idea or event as less important than it actually is or was
  58. zeugma
    gramatically correct linkage of one subject with two or more verbs or a verb with two or more direct objects. Linking shows a relationship between ideas more clearly

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