68 terms

AP Lit Summer Reading: 100 Best-Loved Poems

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Terms in this set (...)

Alliteration
The repetition of sounds at the beginning of words (More Mischief and Merriment)
Allusion
A reference to a person, place, poem, book, event, etc. which isn't part of the story, that the author expects the reader will recognize (In "The Glass Menagerie," Tom speaks of Chamberlain's Umbrella- a reference to British Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain
Anaphora
Repetition of a word or group of words within a short section of writing (A time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted.)
Anthropomorphism
Attributing human qualities, emotions, and behavior to animals (In "Uncle Remus," bears are slow and dumb while in "Aesops Fables," animals are given emotions of jealousy, anger, revenge, etc.)
Assonance
Repetition of an interior vowel sound within a short section (whY does mY wIfe flY in the skY at nIght?)
Ballad Stanza
A stanza of four lines of poetry with a rhyme scheme of "ABCB"
Catalog Verse
A technique in poetry used to describe people, things, places, or ideas. (WH Auden's "In Memory of WB Yeats")
Polysyndeton
the repetition of conjunctions in a series of coordinate words, phrases, or clauses
Cliche
A familiar word or phrase that is used so often that it is no longer fresh or meaningful, but trite (All's well that ends well)
Climax
The point of greatest dramatic tension or excitement in a story (In "To Kill a Mockingbird," when the person chasing Scout is killed)
Colloquialism
A popular expression or term that may or may not be proper English; slang or informal language (He hasn't got any.)
Connotation
A meaning of a word that carries a suggested meaning different from the actual definition (Fireplace has a connotation of warmth, comfort, and security, but the actual definition is a brick area containing fire)
Consonance
Repetition of an interior consonant sound within a short sentence (the kingfiSHer is splaSHing through the ruSHing water.)
Couplet
Two successive rhyming lines of poetry, usually the same length
Denotation
The primary understanding or meaning/definition of a word (Worm means a creature that lives in soil)
Dialect
A particular kind of speech used by members of one specific group because of its geographical location
Dialogue
Conversation between two or more characters
Double Entendre
A type of pun in which a word or phrase has two or more different meanings, one of which is usually sexual (Ay, the heads of the maids, or their maidenheads take it in what sense you will- "Romeo and Juliet")
Elegy
A formal, stylized poem about the death of a famous person, a close friend; a poem on a very solemn subject
Elision
The exclusion or blending of a syllable (Gonna, Wanna, Y'all)
End Rhyme
Rhyme that occurs at the ends of lines
(My mom always said,
Its time for you to go to bed)
Epitaph
An inscription on a tombstone
Foot
A standard of length in poetry, dependent on syllables ("To be/Or not/To be/" is three feet of two syllables each)
Half Rhyme
A near-rhyme; one that is approximate, not exact; also called a slant-rhyme (Keep/Neat, Friend/Wind)
Hyperbole
Exaggeration for emphasis; overstatement ("I've told you a million times to...")
Iamb
The most common foot of poetry in English made up of two syllables, the first unstressed and the second stressed
Iambic Pentameter
A line of poetry composed of five feet of iambs; the most common form of English poetry
Imagery
The use of words to evoke impressions and meanings that are more than just the basic, accepted definitions of the words themselves
Inference
The act of drawing a conclusion that is not actually stated by the author
Interior Monologue
An author's thoughts, written as if they come from his or her mind directly to the reader's
Internal Rhyme
The rhyming of words within one line of poetry or one sentence of prose (The green river slides silently unseen beneath the trees.)
Irony
A perception of inconsistency; sometimes humorous, in which the significance and understanding of a statement or event is changed by its context (The fire station burned down.)
Structural Irony
The use of a naive hero, whose incorrect perceptions differ from the reader's correct ones (Huck Finn)
Verbal Irony
A discrepancy between what is said and what is really meant; sarcasm (A large man whose nickname is "tiny")
Dramatic Irony
The audience or reader knows more about a character's situation than the character does and knows that the character's understanding is incorrect
Juxtaposition
The placement of two dissimilar items, people, thoughts, places, etc next to one another to emphasize the differences or heighten the similarities (In "The Pearl," the main character instinctively touches the valuable pearl and his knife at the same time.)
Lyric Poem
A genre of poetry in which the voice of the poem (which may not be that of the poet) expresses personal feelings or perspectives (Poem #128 by Emily Dickinson)
Metaphor
A comparison of two things that are basically dissimilar in which one is described in terms of the other (The moon, a haunting lantern, shone through the clouds.)
Meter
The emphasized pattern of repeated sounds in poetry; meter is represented by stressed and unstressed syllables
Monologue
An extended speech by one character, either when alone or to others (The Love Song of J Alfred Prufrock; Mark Antony's speech at Caesar's funeral)
Motif
A situation, incident, idea, or image that is repeated significantly in a literary work. (In "Hamlet," revenge is a frequently repeated water.)
Onomatopoeia
A word whose sound (the way it is pronounced) imitates its meaning (Roar, Murmur, Boom, Bzzz
Paradox
A statement that is self-contradictory on its surface, yet makes a point through the juxtaposition of the ideas and words within the paradox (He that hath no money; come ye, buy and eat...)
Parallelism
The repetition of similarly constructed phrases, clauses, or sentences within a short section (Government of the people, by the people, and for the people...)
Personification
A figure of speech in which an object, abstract idea, or animals is given human characteristics (The sun smiled; The wall tried its best to keep out invaders.)
Plot
The pattern of events in a literary work; what happens
Point of View
The position or vantage point, determined by the author, from which the story seems to come to the reader; most common are first-person and third-person ("The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn" is in the first-person as the reader receives all information through Huck's eyes; in "Hard Times" by Charles Dickens, info is received from a narrator not in the story)
Pun
An expression that achieves emphasis or humor by utilizing either two distinctly different meanings for the same word or two similar sounding words
Quatrain
A four-line stanza of poetry that may or may not rhyme
Rhetoric
The art of eloquent speech or writing, which employs various techniques in order to persuade one's audience (Congressional Speeches)
Rhyme Scheme
An alphabetical representation of the way a poem rhymes, constructed by assigning each line a letter
Romanticism
An 18th and 19th century literary movement that is frequently characterized by the following: a depiction of emotion, imagination, and the beauties of nature; settings in an exotic or remote locations a hero/heroine rebelling against social norms; an intense interest in nature and its beauty/fierceness; an interest in irrational realms of dreams, superstitions, legends, etc; language and characters marked by emotional intensity (Frankenstein, Withering Heights)
Satire
Using humor to expose something or someone to ridicule (Animal Farm, Gulliver's Travels)
Sensory Images
The use of details from any, some, or all of the five senses (He reached behind him, felt the wall, and was more secure.)
Setting
When and where the short story, play, or novel takes place (Macbeth takes place in 11th century Scotland)
Simile
A comparison between two different things using either "like" or "as" (I'm as hungry as a horse; You're as strong as a rhino.)
Soliloquy
Lines in a play in which a character reveals thoughts to the audience, but not to the other characters; usually longer than an aside and not directed to the audience (Hamlet's famous "To be or not to be" speech)
Sonnet
A fourteen-line poem written in iambic pentameter and having a standard rhyme scheme
Stanza
A grouping of lines in a poem- like paragraphs except in a poem
Synecdoche
Using a part of something to stand for the entire thing (I spoke to Big Mouth yesterday.)
Synesthesia
The merging or mixing of two sensory experiences to create an image: "hearing color" (The perfume unleashed a stream of perfect words.)
Syntax
The arrangement of words to form sentences
Tercet
A grouping of three consecutive lines of poetry that may or may not rhyme
Tetrameter
A verse in a poem consisting of four metric feet
Theme
The central or dominant idea behind the story; the most important aspect that emerges from how the book treats its subject. Sometimes theme is easy to see, but, at other times, it may be more difficult. Theme is usually expressed indirectly, as an element the reader must figure out. It is a universal statement about humanity, rather than a simple statement dealing with plot or characters in the story. Themes are generally hinted at through different methods; a phrase or quotation that introduces the novel, a recurring element in the book, or an observation made that is reinforced through plot, dialogue, or characters. It must be emphasized that not all works of literature have themes in them.
Tone
The atmosphere in a literary work or the attitude the author puts in a literary work (The tone of "Catch-22" is one of sarcasm and absurdity)
Trimeter
A line of a poem that contains three metric feet
Verse
Another word for "poetry." In Shakespeare, the educated characters and the nobility usually speak in verse to indicate their high station in life