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English 298 Midterm Terms
Terms in this set (67)
The distinctive pattern of pronunciation associated with a place, region, or group. In the alaysis of poetic rhythm and meter, the term "accent" means an additional amount of stress on a syllable that makes it relatively prominent compared with surrounding syllables.
The means by which a text seems to be "talking" to a particular reader or group of readers: the text's addressee.
Designated or implied recipient of an utterance. A text's addressee needs to be distinguished from its actual reader. In special circumstances addressee and reader may overlap, for example where the "author" directly addresses the "reader".
Systematic study of the abstract properties of beauty. In philosophy, aesthetics is a branch of study dealing with what appeals to the senses. In the study of literature, aesthetics is especially concerned with kinds of formal patterning, such as rhyme, rhythm and alliteration, which help to define its distinctive appeal.
An error or failing in interpreting a text caused by over-attention to our own personal responses at the expense of what the words of the text actually say.
Person (or animal or similar) who makes something happen.
The effect produced in drama when the theatrical illusion is broken in ways that make the audience perceive the drama as a product of theatrical techniques rather than as something "real".
A narrative fiction in which characters and actions, and sometimes also the setting, can be viewed as referring to a parallel story.
A type of sound pattern in which nearby words begin with similar sounds (or have their most strongly stressed syllables beginning with similar sounds).
Moment in a text when the text makes an implicit or explicit reference to another text, either by directly quoting the second text of modifying the second text in order to suit the new context.
An effect created when a phrase or statement can be interpreted in more than one way. It's use can be deliberate or accidental.
A rhetorical figure in which a speaker addresses either someone who is not there, or even dead, or something that is not normally thought of as able to understand language or reply.
Language that would normally be found in an earlier period, and whose usage is therefore unusual or marked.
A two-way choice, or dichotomy, between mutually exclusive, alternative options. The two terms need not be simply neutral; one may have a positive, the other a negative value. Such oppositions provide a simple, pervasive mechanism for organizing thought and experience, but have important cultural effects because of the way they distribute value with one term preferred and the other implicit inferior or rejected.
Unrhymed iambic pentameter.
In art, a technique in which works are constructed from various materials available or to hand. In cultural studies, the term describes a wider process by which people assemble objects from across social divisions and use them to project new cultural identities.
A body of literary works regarded as the most important, significant, long-lasting and worthy of study: literary classics.
Purification of the spectator's or reader's emotions by a powerful work of art, especially through watching an emotionally powerful play.
Composition formed when different pieces of texts, or styles or genres, are placed alongside one another. The juxtaposition of such materials forces us to consider the two (or more) things side-by-side.
The suggestion, introduced by Russian Formalist critics in the early twentieth century, that the characteristic effect of devices and techniques in works of art and literature is to make us see familiar and taken for granted aspects of our world in new or unusual ways.
French term meaning "unknotting", often used to describe the conclusion of a novel, film or play in which the problems that have driven the action are resolved, either comically or tragically.
The usual English version of a term to refer to the way novels are inhabited by a multiplicity of different and perhaps competing voices: those of narrators and characters, but also potentially including all the voices or registers that are available at the tie of the writing.
A conventional way of presenting, in writing, the conversational interaction that takes place between two or more chargers in speech. Literary or philosophical dialogue is stylized because many features of real-life verbal interaction are either excluded or tidied up and simplified.
The style of language, usually vocabulary, chosen in a particular literary text or by a particular author.
An effect created when a character on stage and involved in a dramatic action expresses a belief that the audience knows to be false. Typically, the incorrect belief will be about some crucial component of the plot, and so determines the character's fate.
A poem or song lamenting someone's death; a funeral poem.
Literally 'a puzzle'. Many narratives are driven by a character's quest to resolve an enigma.
An inscription or quotation at the beginning of a literary work or document, setting out or highlighting its theme.
The general term for a number of non-literal uses of language.
In metrical analysis, a group of two or three syllables, the first or last of which is more prominent (has more stress) than the others The four main types of foot in English are: amebic, anapaestic, trochaic and dactylic.
The form of a text is how it is constructed as a pattern or system of components. Such components include linguistic components, verbal features, metrical structures, and narrative techniques. Aspects of form also include the division of text into sections and relationships that arise between components or sections.
The direction of critical attention onto how components of language, or a particular text, fit and work together. As a branch of linguistics, an emphasis on grammatical structures and the meaning of sentences largely in isolation from their communicate function or the context in which they occur.
Verse whose lines do not have their length and rhythm regulated by a metrical pattern.
A term used to indicate any particular type or kind of text. Each genre is typically characterized by specific kinds of content, theme, language, structure, and conventions.
Rules of selection and combination that govern possible relationships between words in a language. Relatedly, the systematic description of a language as we find it in a sample of speech or writing, or by electing examples for native speakers.
Great Vowel Shift
A set of interrelated changes in pronunciation that occurred across a range of vowels in English during the fifteenth to eighteenth centuries.
A critical term used to distinguish between the real author and the impression produced by some texts that there is a designing consciousness or voice within the text itself.
An imagined reader implicit addressed by a text; not to be confused with an actual reader.
The process of a logical or reasonable conclusion from statements or evidence, or the result of carrying out such a cognitive process.
An error or defect in interpreting a text which results from an unwarranted shift from what words appear to mean to what we imagine the author meant by using them.
An effect created by use of language in which the speaker or writer covertly indicated disagreement with what is directly expressed by the words.
A form of courtly dramatic entertainment popular in the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries and containing music, masks over the face, and dancing. Costumes and stage machinery were elaborate, and members of the audience were invited to contribute to the action or dancing.
A figure of speech in which one thing or idea or event is spoke of as if it were another thing, idea or event: the two fields are blended together by the use of a metaphor.
A figure of speech in which one thing or idea or event is referred to as if it were another thing idea or even with which it is normally associated.
Pattern regulating the length and, to some extent, the rhythm of ones of poetry. Meters are often named in terms of a type of foot they are held to consist of and how many of those feet there are.
The attempted faithful representation of the world and human life in literary texts.
In film editing, the juxtaposition of seemingly unrelated shots or scenes that, when combined in sequence, produce a meaning that goes beyond what is contained in the isolated shots themselves, typically because of inferences drawn from juxtaposition of the shots.
A critical theory and practice that promotes the idea of that students of literature should focus on close analysis of literary texts, rather than on literary history or authorial biography. Argued that the goal of literary criticism is to dissever, through close analysis, an organic unity between a text's form and its content.
The Oxford English Dictionary, which not only gives the definition of words and representations of their pronunciation, but ale their etymology, their meanings at various historical moments, and their connection with other words used in a given period to express broadly the same content or meaning.
A statement that goes against received opinion or what is generally believed to be the case; the term is more usually used to indicate an absurd or self-contradictory statement. Paradoxes in literary texts often present profound insights or important and unresolved concerns.
Similarity of sound sequence, sentence structure or word meaning between two close or adjacent sections of text, often highlighted in order to convey similarity or contrast between the meanings of two or more parallel expressions.
Term used to describe material that surrounds the main body of a text. Such material is often prepared by people other than the author, including editors, publishers or printers, and is subject to their decision rather than the author's.
Parts of Speech
Types of word, classified on the basis of their function in sentences. Common parts of speech include nouns, verbs, adjectives, adverbs, articles, and prepositions.
A literary or artistic composition that imitates a distinctive style from the past or from a contemporary genre. Sometimes exaggerates or makes fun of a particular style by clearly signaling its element of imitation. Conventions from one genre are typically merged with the subject matter from another in a way that is obviously incongruous.
An effect created by ascribing emotions and feelings to inanimate object and processes in the world, then assuming that those objects and processes share our feelings.
An invented character or voice assumed by an author in a novel, poem or other work, in order to convey the impression that the writer is writing as a different person, or as a particular character. The views or values of the persona cannot be straightforwardly taken as those of the author.
A figure of speech in which a thing or idea or event is spoken of as if it were a human being, or had human characteristics.
A philosophical and cultural condition or response to cultural conditions thought characteristic of the contemporary period in post-industrial societies. In the postmodern condition, human experience is taken to consist of an endless recycling of cultural texts via technological systems of communication, with the consequence that authentic personal experience is illusory. Rather than striving to represent authentic experience, postmodern texts play with their own constructedness and inauthenticity by being ironic and self-reflexive.
A literary style or genre of the novel that attempts to represent the social world as convincingly as possible, especially the world of nineteenth-century Europe. Characters are represented as having inner lives, experiences, motives; and they are placed in detailed social and economic settings, and interact with one another in ways that echo real social interactions.
The act of making something present to an audience or reader through description, portrayal, symbolization or some other form of embodiment or enactment.
A pattern of line-final rhymes in verse, such as AxAx to indicate that the first and third lines of a passage of your stanza rhyme but that the second and fourth de not, or ABABCC to indicate that the first and third, second and fourth, and fifth and sixth lines rhyme.
A regular pattern of relatively strongly and relatively weakly stressed syllabus in speech or oral performance of a literary text.
A figure of speech in which one thing or idea or event is said to resemble, or be similar to or be like, another thing, idea or event; an explicit verbal comparison.
A plot device whose main feature is that the audience/reader knows more than the characters who are victims of the irony. The effect of the irony is produced when the characters speak or act in a way that is contrary to how they would if they knew what the audience/reader knows. The ironic situation may either be comic or tragic, spending on the circumstances, the outcome and our feelings towards the characters.
A figure of speech in which one thing or idea or event is spoken by referring to a part of that thing, idea or event.
An effect created by use of language in which we do not mean what we say literally; instead we imply an attitude of disbelief towards the content of our utterance or writing.
A form of text divided into lines that have one or more of the following features: (1) there is a pause, or major syntactic break at the end of the line; (2) the line is structurally parallel to an adjacent line; (3) the line is of a certain length, counting syllables or stressed syllables; and (4) when printed on the page, the line does not reach from one side of the page to the other and may be followed by blank space.
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