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Rhetorical Strategies

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Allegory
an expressive style that uses fictional characters and events to describe some subject by suggestive resemblances; work can be moral, religious, political, social, or satiric
Alliteration
use of the same consonant at the beginning of words that are close together
Allusion
a brief or indirect reference to a person, place, event, or passage in a work of literature or the Bible assumed to be sufficiently well known to be recognized by the reader. Adds depth and universal significance to the passage
Anadiplosis
the repetition of the last word of one clause at the beginning of the next clause
Analogy
a comparison between two things in which the more complex is explained in terms of the more simple
Anaphora
the repetition of introductory words or phrases for effect
Anecdote
a short entertaining account of some happening, frequently personal or biographical, used to bring humor or to illustrate a particular characteristic or trait
Aphorism
a brief saying embodying a moral; a concise statement of a principal or precept given in pointed words
Apostrophe
A figure of speech in which one directly addresses an absent or imaginary person, or some abstraction
Chiasmus
A term from classical rhetoric that describes a situation in which you introduce subjects in the order A B and C and then talk about them in the order C B and A.
conceit
a juxtaposition that makes a surprising connection between two seemingly different things. Ex: Oxymorons, comparisons, analogy, or metaphor
Ellipsis
the omission of a word or phrase which is grammatically necessary but can be deduced for the context ("Some people prefer cats; others, dogs.")
Epigram
a brief, clever, and usually memorable statement
Ethos
appealing to ethics
Euphemism
the use of a word or phrase that is less direct, but that is also less distasteful or less offensive than another
Foreshadowing
the use of a hint or clue to suggest a larger event that occurs later in the work
Hyperbole
deliberate exaggeration in order to create humor or emphasis
Verbal Irony
a method of expression, often humorous or sarcastic, in which the intended meaning of the words if the opposite of their usual meaning
Situational Irony
when something happens as a result of or in reaction to something else in a way that is contrary to what would be expected or acceptable
Logos
the appeal to logic or reason, measured in a measured logical way
Metaphor
a figure of speech in which one thing is compared to another by being spoken of as though it were that thing; a comparison in which like or as is not used
Metonymy
a figure of speech that replaces the name of an object, person, or idea with something with which it is associated
Non sequitur
a statement that does not follow logically from what preceeded it.
Onomatopoeia
the use of words that sound like what they mean, such as "hiss" "buzz" and "slam"
Parable
a short story from which a lesson may be drawn
Paradox
a statement which seems self-contradictory, but may be true in fact
oxymoron
a figure of speech in which the author obscures or denies the complexity of the issues in an argument
Parrallelism
any structure which brings together parallel elements, be these nouns, adjectives, verbs, adverbs, or larger structure to show that the ideas in the parts or sentences are equal in importance
Pathos
the appeal to emotions
Personification
the attribution of human qualities to a non human or inanimate object
Synecdoche
a figure of speech in which a part of something is used to represent a whole
Litotes
understatement for rhetorical effect (especially when expressing an affirmative by negating its contrary)
Neologism
the act of inventing a word or phrase
Palindrone
A word spelled the same way forward and backward (dad, nun, mom, level, rotator)
Tautology
needless repetition