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22 Cards in this Set

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The device of using character and/or story elements symbolically to represent an abstraction in addition to the literal meaning.
Allegory
In some allegories, for example, an author may intend the characters to personify an abstraction like hope or freedom. The allegorical meaning usually deals with moral truth or a generalization about human existence.
The repetition of sounds, especially initial consonant sounds in two or more neighboring words.
Alliteration
Ex. “She sells sea shells”.

Although the term is not frequently in the multiple choice section, you can look for alliteration in any essay passage.

The repetition can reinforce meaning, unify ideas, supply a musical sound, and/or echo the sense of the passage.
A direct or indirect reference to something which is presumably commonly known, such as an event, book, myth, place, or work of art.
Allusion
Allusions can be historical, literary, religious, topical, or mythical. There are many more possibilities, and a work may simultaneously use multiple layers of allusion.
The multiple meanings, either intentional or unintentional, of a word, phrase, sentence, or passage.
Ambiguity
A similarity or comparison between two different things or the relationship between them.
Analogy
An analogy can explain something unfamiliar by associating it with or pointing out its similarity to something more familiar.

Analogies can also make writing more vivid, imaginative, or intellectually engaging.
The word, phrase, or clause referred to by a pronoun.
Antecedent
The AP language exam occasionally asks for the antecedent of
a given pronoun in a long, complex sentence or in a group of sentences.

A question from the 2001 AP test as an example follows: “But it is the grandeur of all truth which can occupy a very high place in human interests that it is never absolutely novel to the meanest of minds; it exists eternally, by way of germ of latent principle, in the lowest as in the highest, needing to be developed but never to be planted.”The antecedent of “it” (bolded) is...? [answer: “all truth”]
The opposition or contrast of ideas; the direct opposite.
Antithesis
A terse statement of known authorship which expresses a general truth or a moral principle.

If the authorship is unknown, the statement is generally considered to be a folk proverb.

It can be a memorable summation of the author’s point.
Aphorism
A figure of speech that directly addresses an absent or imaginary person or a personified abstraction, such as liberty or love. It is an address to someone or something that cannot answer.
Apostrophe
The effect may add familiarity or emotional intensity. William Wordsworth addresses John Milton as he writes, “Milton, thou shouldst be living at this hour: England hath need of thee.” Another example is Keats’ “Ode to a Grecian Urn,” in which Keats addresses the urn itself: “Thou still unravished bride of quietness.” Many apostrophes imply a personification of the object addressed.
The emotional nod created by the entirety of a literary work, established partly by the setting and partly by the
author’s choice of objects that are described.
Atmosphere
Even such elements as a description of the weather can contribute to the atmosphere. Frequently atmosphere foreshadows events. Perhaps it can create a mood.
A verbal description, the purpose of which is to exaggerate or distort, for comic effect, a person’s distinctive physical features or other characteristics
Caricature
A grammatical unit that contains both a subject and a verb.
Clause
An independent, or main, clause expresses a complete thought and can stand alone as a sentence.

A dependent, or subordinate clause, cannot stand alone as a sentence and must be accompanied by an independent clause.

The point that you want to consider is the question of what or why the author subordinates one element should also become aware of making effective use of subordination in your own writing.
The use of slang or informalities in speech or writing.
Colloquial/Colloquialism
Not generally acceptable for formal writing, colloquialisms give a work a conversational, familiar tone.

Colloquial expressions in writing include local or regional dialects.
A fanciful expression, usually in the form of an extended metaphor or surprising analogy between seemingly dissimilar objects.
Conciet
A conceit displays intellectual cleverness as a result of the unusual comparison being made.
The non-literal, associative meaning of a word; the implied, suggested meaning.
Connotation
Connotations may involve ideas, emotions, or attitudes.
The strict, literal, dictionary definition of a word, devoid of any emotion, attitude, or color.
Denotation
Ex. the denotation of a knife would be a utensil used to cut; the connotation of a knife might be fear, violence, anger, foreboding, etc.
Related to style, this refers to the writer’s word choices, especially with regard to their correctness, clearness, or effectiveness.
Diction
For the AP exam, you should be able to describe an author’s diction (for example, formal or informal, ornate or plain) and understand the ways in which diction can complement the author’s purpose.

Diction, combined with syntax, figurative language, literary devices, etc., creates an author’s style.
These words have the primary aim of teaching or instructing, especially the teaching of moral or ethical principles.
Didactic
From the Greek, didactic literally means “teaching.”

May be used to describe tone.
A more agreeable or less offensive substitute for a generally unpleasant word or concept,
Euphemism
From the Greek for “good speech,”.

The euphemism may be used to adhere to standards of social or political correctness or to add humor or ironic understatement.

Ex. saying “earthly remains” rather than “corpse.”
A metaphor developed at great length, occurring frequently in or throughout a work.
Extended Metaphor
Writing or speech that is not intended to carry literal meaning and is usually meant to be imaginative and vivid.
Figurative Language
A device used to produce figurative language. Many compare dissimilar things.
Figure of Speech
Figures of speech include apostrophe, hyperbole, irony, metaphor, oxymoron, paradox, personification, simile, synecdoche, and understatement.