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Literary and Poetic Devices
Literary Devices • A form of language use in which writers and speakers convey something other than the literal meaning of their words. • These are the tools that writers, such as Shakespeare, use to make their writing more complex, deep, and beautiful.
Plot • The events that take place in the story. • Exposition/Background, Rising Action, Climax, Falling Action, Resolution/Denoument
Point of View • The perspective from which the story is told • 1 st person/3 rd person • Limited/omniscient
Character Protagonist Antagonist • The main character/ “good” guy • The “bad” guy/the opposing force or conflict of the story
Setting • The time and place of the story • Multiple • ex. 1960’ s, John’s house, the African jungle, a Puritan era village
Conflict • The problem of the story, the solution that the protagonist must solve • Man vs man (society) • Man vs nature • Man vs. self
Conflict • Internal Conflict – A problem the character is struggling with personally/mentally – Ex. I can’t solve this problem, I don’t have what it takes
Conflict • External Conflict – A problem the character faces which is outside of his/her control – Ex. Another character, nature, physical obstacles
Theme • The lesson the author wants the reader to take away/learn from the story • NOT A 1 WORD IDEA! • Can be argued/has 2 sides • Ex. “Love conquers all” NOT “Love”
Symbol • An object or action in a literary work that means more than itself, that stands for something beyond itself. • Has a deeper meaning • Example: Often, in Shakespeare, birds are a symbol of omens/superstition.
Foreshadowing • Hints of what is to come in the action of a play or a story. • Example: “Fair is foul, and foul is fair. ” • This tells us that the people and actions of this story are not always as simple as they appear to be.
Allusion • This is a reference within one work of literature (Macbeth) to another person, place, or thing outside of the literature itself (King Edward, Scottish history).
Figurative Language • Language which allows the reader to more clearly and vividly imagine things that are going on in the story. • Examples: • Simile • Metaphor • Personification
Rhyme • correspondence of sound between words or the endings of words, especially when these are used at the ends of lines of poetry • Ex. Moon, balloon
Simile • A comparison using the words “like” or “as” in the sentence. • Example: “Look like the innocent flower, but be the serpent under it”
Metaphor • A comparison which DOES NOT use the words “like” or “as” in the sentence. • Example: “Your face, my Thane, is a book where men may read strange matters. ”
Personification • Giving human like characteristics to un-human objects or things. • Example: “If chance will have me King, then chance may crown me. ” • Here Chance is being spoken about as if it is a person or character
Alliteration • The repetition of consonant sounds, especially at the beginning of words. • Example: “But now I am cabined, cribbed, confined, bound in to saucy doubts and fears. ” or “The bells, bells”
Consonance • The repetition of consonant sounds for effect • Ex. “all mammals named Sam are clammy"
Assonance • The repetition of vowel sounds for effect • Ex. “He was soon borne away by the waves, and lost in darkness and distance. "
Syntax • The authors choice of sentence structure, the arrangement of words for deliberate purpose
Diction • The author’s word choice • Ex. Using the word “morose” versus “sad”
Tone • The author or speaker’s attitude toward the subject and the audience. • Ex. Bitter, skeptical, sarcastic
Hyperbole • Extreme exaggeration which the author uses for effect (not meant to be taken literally) • “I’m so hungry I could eat a horse”
Imagery • The use of one or all of the 5 senses in order to illicit (draw out) an image in the readers mind. • Ex. The sour lemon made his tongue tingle and lips pucker.
Onomatopoeia • the formation of a word from a sound associated with what is named • (e. g. , cuckoo, sizzle, boo )