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129 Cards in this Set

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  • Back
context
words surrounding another word, or events surrounding another event
tragedy
type of drama about serious events with an unhappy ending
comedy
type of drama about humorous events, has a happy ending
stanza
block of continuous text in a poem like a paragraph
pun
play on words--"the story about his electrocution really shocked me"
parody
making fun of events and people for entertainment
ode
poem written as a tribute to a person/thing
genre
category under which a work of literature is classified
archetype
very old pattern for a type of character or plot--i.e. evil serpent, evil stepmother
monologue
one character giving a long speech, may or may not have listeners onstage
dialogue
conversation between two or more characters
contrast
looking at two things to see how they are different
tall tale
unrealistic story told as though you should believe it, i.e. Paul Bunyan
legend
story based on a small piece of historical truth that is embellished, blown out of proportion
prose
writing that is not poetry or drama
fiction
writing that is not factual
stage directions
tells actors how to move onstage--left and right are based on an actor at center stage facing the audience
inference/infer
making an educated guess based on observations
falling action
events occurring after the climax, leading up to resolution
rising action
events leading up to the climax, tension and problems build
inciting incident
event that starts conflict
chronology
list of events in real time order; a timeline
third person omniscient
when a story is told by a voice that isn't in the story, and that voice has access to the thoughts of all characters
sensory language
language appealing to touch, taste, sight, smell, sound
limerick
5 line humorous poem with rhyme scheme aabba
hyperbole
extreme exaggeration for effect
voice
writer's unique use of language and grammar
verbal irony
when you say one thing but mean something different--includes sarcasm, understatement, overstatement
unreliable narrator
when a story is told by someone who may be distorting some facts
universal themes
ideas found in literature on every continent
tone
writer's attitude toward a particular subject, character, event, audience
title
name of a work of literature--must be read as part of the work--analyze its significance
third person limited point of view
when a story is told by an outside voice who can access one character's thoughts, but not others
theme
message or lesson an author is trying to convey through a work of literature
symbol
character, object, event, setting that stands for some bigger idea than just itself
suspense
feeling of uncertainty or anxiety created in the reader
style
writer's unique way of using language
static character
a character who stays mostly the same throughout a story
sonnet
14 line lyric poem with a rhyme scheme, traditionally written using iambic pentameter
soliloquy
one character onstage alone giving a long speech that reveals thoughts and feelings
situational irony
when actual events turn out to be very different from what you would normally expect under a given set of circumstances
simile
comparison of two unlike things using like, as, than
short story
fiction story with a compressed plot, usually 10 pages or fewer
setting
time and place of a story
satire
ridiculing something in order to bring about change
round character
a major character with many different character traits
rhythm
musical feeling in poetry
rhyme scheme
pattern of end rhymes, shown by lower case letters representing sounds
rhyme
when words share ending sounds
resolution
final part of plot where the conflict is fixed
repetition
use of a word or device more than once
refrain
part of a poem that is repeated
protagonist
main character in a story
point of view
vantage point from which a story is told
poetry
shortened, rhythmic language with strong images and figures of speech
plot
series of events that make up a story
persuasion
using evidence to convince an audience to agree with your position
personification
giving human qualities or abilities to something nonhuman
onomatopoeia
words that imitate sounds
omniscient narrator
a narrator who can access characters' thoughts
nonfiction
writing that is factual
narrator
character or voice telling a story
narrative poem
type of poetry written for the main purpose of telling a story
myth
story passed down by word of mouth that explains natural events while entertaining
mood
feeling a story creates in the reader
meter
pattern of stressed/unstressed syllables in a line of poetry
metaphor
comparison of unlike things which states that one thing actually is another
main idea
central concept of a nonfiction piece
lyric poetry
poetry written for the main purpose of expressing emotion
literary criticism
analyzing literature to look for deeper meanings
irony
occurs when there is a contrast between expectation and reality
internal rhyme
rhymes occurring within the same line
internal conflict
a character's mental struggle, i.e. making a decision or accepting a difficult fact
indirect characterization
when a character's personality is revealed through actions, interactions with others, and dialogue
imagery
words that form help you to visualize something
idiom
a saying in a particular language that means something other than its literal meaning
iambic pentameter
10 total syllables, unstressed followed by stressed--"I am a pirate with a wooden leg"
historical context
actual events which serve as a story's setting
haiku
3 line Japanese poem with 17 total syllables, 5/7/5, usually about nature
free verse
poetry written without regular meter or rhyme schemek
foreshadowing
clues an author gives us about what will happen later in a story
folk tale
a tale passed down by word of mouth with no known author
foil
a character who provides contrast for another character
flat character
a minor character who is not given very many character traits
flash forward
interrupting present action to show the reader something that has not happened yet in a story
flashback
interrupting present events to show something that has already happened
first-person narrator
when a story is told by a character who is in it
figurative language
langauge that is not intended to be interpreted literally
fable
short moral story, usually featuring talking animals
external conflict
struggle between a character and a physical or outside force
extended metaphor
an elaborate comparison that is developed over several lines, possibly throughout the entirety of a poem
exposition
beginning of a story that reveals characters and setting
epic
long narrative poem about the deeds of a heroic figure
end rhyme
rhymes occurring at the ends of lines
dramatic monologue
one character giving a speech to silent listeners
dramatic irony
when readers or viewers know something one or more of the characters do not know
drama
plays--intended to be acted out for an audience
direct characterization
explicitly stating what a character's personality is like
diction
word choice
dialogue
conversation between characters in a story
dialect
non-standard spoken form of language
denouement
the end of a story, where problems get fixed, and "loose ends are tied up"
denotation
literal, dictionary definition of a word
couplet
two consecutive lines of rhyming poetry
contradiction
two things that seem to cancel out one another--they can't both exist together or both be true
connotation
meanings that are associated with words in addition to literal meanings
conflict
struggle between opposing forces
climax
highest point of emotion or intensity in a story
chronological order
putting things in real time order
characterization
process of building a character's personality
character
person participating in a story
catalog poem
poem based around a list of related items or images
blank verse
iambic pentameter that doesn't rhyme
biography
story of a person's life told by someone else
ballad
song that tells a story
autobiography
when a person tells their own life story
assonance
repetition of similar vowel sounds
aside
when a character speaks and the audience hears, but some other characters on stage aren't supposed to hear
approximate rhyme
when two words share some ending sounds but don't rhyme exactly
antagonist
character working against the main character
analogy
comparing two things in terms of two other things, i.e. baby is to human as acorn is to oak
ambiguity
a statement that is open to multiple interpretations
allusion
reference to a well-known person, event, place, work of art/literature, etc.
alliteration
repetition of similar beginning consonant sounds
allegory
a story in which the entire plot/setting is symbolic
audience
viewers of a play or readers of a work of literature
objective
fact, not opinion
subjective
opinion
cliche
an overused, worn out expression