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Terms in this set (120)
AutobiographyAn account of a person's own lifeBiographyAn account of a person's life written or told by another personPlotThe sequence of related events that make up a storyBasic Situation (Exposition)The part of a story that introduces the characters and the conflicts they faceComplicationsProblems that arise during a story that keep a character from getting what he or she wantsClimaxThe story's most exciting or suspenseful moment, when something happens that decides the outcome of the conflictResolution (Denouement)The last part of the plot, where the conflict is resolved and the story endsConflictA struggle between a character and some forceExternal ConflictA struggle between a character and something outside himself or herselfInternal ConflictA struggle between a character and himself or herselfCauseThe reason that something happensEffectThe result of an action, decision, or situationChronological OrderThe arrangement of details in time order; that is, the order in which they happenedFlashbackScene in a piece of literature that interrupts the present action of the plot to show events that happened at an earlier timeForeshadowingThe use of clues to hint at what is going to happen later in the plotSuspenseThe quality in a story or play that makes the reader eager to discover what will happen next or how the story will endSettingThe time and place in which a story unfoldsProtagonistThe character or force that blocks the protagonist from achieving his or her goalSubordinate CharacterCharacter who may be less important to the story than the protagonist or antagonist, but is still important to the plot and/or reveals information about the main characterDirect CharacterizationWhen an author tells us directly what a character is likeIndirect CharacterizationWhen readers have to put "clues" together to figure out for ourselves what a character is likeStatic CharacterA character who does not change over the course of a storyDynamic CharacterA character who changes in an important way as the result of the story's actionFlat CharacterA character who only has one or two personality traits; he or she can be described in a single phraseRound CharacterA character with the three‐dimensional qualities of real people, with many traits and complexitiesStock CharacterCharacters who fit our preconceived notions about a "type"MotivationThe reasons for a character's behavior, what he/she says, or the decisions he/she makes1st Person POVThe narrator is a character in the story. They use the pronoun "I" and can only reveal their own thoughts, not the thoughts of the other characters.3rd Person Limited POVThe narrator, who plays no part in the story, zooms in on the thoughts and feelings of one character.Omniscient POVThe narrator plays no part in the story but can tell us what more than one of the characters is thinking and feeling as well as what is happening in other places.Narrator/SpeakerThe person telling the story (called the "speaker" in poetry)PersonaA speaker created by a writer to tell a story or speak in a poem.ComedyA dramatic work that is light and often humorous in tone and usually ends happily, with a peaceful resolution of the main conflictTragedyA dramatic work that presents the downfall of a dignified character or characters who are involved in historically or socially significant events. The events in a tragic plot are set in motion by a decision that is often an error in judgment. Succeeding events inevitably lead to a disastrous conclusion, usually death.Tragic HeroThe main character in a tragedy who shows evidence of high rank and nobility of character, is marred by a tragic flaw or a fatal mistake in judgment, gains self‐ knowledge and wisdom, and comes to an unhappy end.DialogueIn drama, a conversation between two charactersDramatic MonologueA poem or part of a drama in which a speaker addresses one or more silent listeners, often reflecting on a specific problem or situationSoliloquyLong speech in which a character who is alone onstage expresses private thoughts or feelingsAsideIn a play, words spoken directly to the audience or to another character, but not overheard by others onstageFoilCharacter who serves as a contrast to another characterScene DesignDescribes what the stage should look like in order to make the audience believe the story is happening in a specific time and place (includes the set, or background; lighting; costumes; and props)PropsPortable items that actors carry or handle onstage in order to perform the actions of the playStage DirectionsA playwright's written instructions about how the actors are to move and behave in a play. They explain in what direction characters should move, what facial expressions they should assume, and so on.Situational IronyWhen what actually happens is the opposite of what is expectedDramatic IronyWhen the reader or the audience knows something important that a character does not knowVerbal IronyWhen a speaker says one thing but intentionally means the oppositeAmbiguityWhen a word, phrase, action, or situation can be interpreted two or more ways, all of which can be supported by the context of the workSubtletyWhen meaning is delicate, almost undetectableContradictionA direct opposition between two thingsIncongruityWhen a piece of information does not seem to fit with the rest of the informationImageryThe use of words and phrases that appeal to the five sensesSimileFigure of speech that makes a comparison between two seemingly unlikely things by using a connecting word such as like, as, than, or resemblesMetaphorFigure of speech that makes a comparison between two unlike things without using a connecting word such as like, as, than, or resemblesPersonificationFigure of speech in which a nonhuman thing or quality is talked about as if it were humanHyperboleFigure of speech that uses exaggeration to express strong emotion or create a comic effectIdiomA phrase or expression that means something different than what the words actually saySymbolPerson, place, thing, or event that stands both for itself and for something beyond itselfAllegoryA narrative (story) in which characters and settings stand as symbols expressing truths about human lifeAllusionA reference in a literary work to a person, place, or thing in history or another work of literature (often indirect or brief references to well‐known characters or events)StanzaA grouping of two or more lines in a poemLineA sequence of words printed as a separate entity on the page in a poemAlliterationRepetition of the same or similar consonant sounds in words that are close together, especially at the beginning of wordsOnomatopoeiaUse of a word whose sound imitates or suggests its meaningRhymeRepetition of accented vowel sounds and all sounds following them in words that are close together in a poem. End rhyme occurs at the end of the line.ToneThe attitude a writer takes toward a subject, a character, or the reader. Tone is given through the writer's choice of words and details.MoodThe emotional effect that a piece of writing evokes in the readerDictionA writer's or speaker's choice of words. Diction is an essential element of a writer's style.ConnotationAll the meanings, associations, or emotions that a word suggests. Connotations play an important part in creating diction, mood, and tone.DenotationThe literal, dictionary definition of a wordDialectA form of language that is spoken in a particular place or by a particular group of peopleThemeThe central idea or insight about human life the author wants us to obtain from reading the author's writing.InferenceAn educated guess; reading "between the lines" to make guesses about what's left unsaidAnalogyComparison made between two things to show how they are alikeAnecdoteA brief account of an interesting incident or event that usually is intended to entertain or to make a pointMain IdeaThe writer's most important point, opinion, or messageSupporting DetailsSpecific information, examples, and facts that help a reader better understand the main idea of a piece of writing and make an argument believableAuthor's PurposeThe purpose is the reason the writer wrote the piece. The piece was most likely written to entertain, inform, or persuade.AudienceThe particular group of readers or viewers that the writer is addressingArgumentA statement, reason, or fact for or against a point; this is what a writer tries to prove in an essay, especially a persuasive essayEvidenceDetails that support your claims and make you appear credibleThesis StatementThe central idea of an essay.Logical AppealArgument that speaks to a reader's mind and/or common sense and requires him or her to be reasonableEmotional AppealArgument that speaks to a reader's emotions; it may be powerful, but writers must be careful not to make readers feel manipulatedEthical AppealArgument that appeals to a reader's sense of ethics or moral values; it establishes that a source is trustworthyCounterargumentWhen a writer acknowledges the arguments of those who might disagree with him or her and then shows why those arguments are wrongHookA sentence at the beginning of an essay that grabs the reader's attention and makes them want to keep readingBibliographyA list of materials used to research a topic and/or write a textSynthesizeTo combine information from a variety of sourcesCompareTo identify similarities between two thingsContrastTo identify differences between two thingsResearch QuestionsA research question is one that can be answered using facts found though research. The more specific it is, the easier it is to answer.Primary SourceA firsthand account of an eventSecondary SourceA source that presents information compiled from or based on other sourcesGeneralizationA broad statement about an entire groupOpinionA statement that reflects the writer's or speaker's belief, but which cannot be supported by proof or evidenceFactA statement that can be provedBiasA particular tendency or inclination that prevents fair consideration of a question; prejudiceObjectiveBased on factsSubjectiveIncludes a writer's personal feelings and opinionsCredibleBelievableReliableFrom trustworthy sourcesCoherentLogically connected; consistentLogical OrderWhen a writer arranges his or her ideas (or steps in a functional document) in an order that makes sense and is easy for a reader to followHeadingThe title or caption of a page, chapter, or sectionGraphicsA picture used to illustrate the information presented in a textSubtitleA secondary, usually explanatory, title of a literary workChartA visual representation of numerical dataGraphA diagram representing a system of connections among two or more things with the use of dots, lines, bars, etc.DiagramA drawing or plan that outlines and explains the parts, operation, etc. of somethingContext CluesHints or suggestions that may surround unfamiliar words or phrases in a piece of writing and clarify their meaning