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Abstract Diction

words that describe concepts rather than concrete images

Ad Hominem Fallacy

a fallacy of logic in which a person's character or motive is attacked instead of their argument

Ad Populum Fallacy

popular appeal, or appeal to the majority


an extended narrative in prose or verse in which characters, events, and settings represent abstract qualities in which the author intends a second meaning to be read beneath the surface of the story


Repetition of consonant sounds at the beginning of words that are close to one another


a brief or indirect reference to a person, place, passage, or event in a work of literature that is well known


the expression of an idea in such a way that more than one meaning is suggested


the repetition of the last word of one clause in the beginning of the next


a comparison between two things in which the more complex is explained in terms of more simple


the repetition of introductory words or phrases for effect


departure from normal word order for the sake of emphasis. normal syntax is violated


a short entertaining account of something happening, frequently personal or biographical used to bring humor or to illustrate a particular characteristic or trait


opposition or contrast emphasized by parallel structure


the word for which a pronoun stands


a brief saying embodying a moral


a strategy in which an absent person, inanimate object, or abstract being is addressed directly

Appeal to authority/ expert testimony

citation of information from people recognized for their special knowledge of a subject for the purpose of strengthening an argument


repetition of vowel sounds between different consonants


commas used (with no conjunction) to separate a series of words


either saying that supporting a specific cause/stance would result in the rejection of peeers or using the popular support of a cause/stance to persuade other to support it as well

Begging the Question

fallacy of logical argument that assumes the reader will automatically accept in assertion without proper support

Cause and Effect

examination of the causes and/or effects of a situation or phenomenon


a syntactical structure by which the order of the terms in the first of two parallel clauses is reversed in the second

Circular Logic/Thinking/Reasoning

a fallacy which involves assrtions endlessly without real support

Colloquial Diction

words or phrases used in everyday conversation and informal writing which is usually inappropriate in formal writning

Concrete Diction

words that describe specific, observable things, people, or things rather than ideas or qualities


implied or suggested meaning of a word because of its association with the reader's mind


repetiton of identitical consonant sounds within two or more words close in proximity

Convoluted sentences

long, complicated sentences that are often hard to follow because they are wordy and too many ideas are rolled together


the literal or obvious meaning of a word


any omitted part of speech that is easily understood in context


the repetition of the first word of one clause at the of the clause


a brief, clever, and usually memorable statement


the repetition of the same word or groups of words at the ends of phrases, clauses, or sentences


appealing to ethics


the use of a word or phrase that is less direct, but that is also less distatesteful or offensive than another

False Casualitiy

a fallacy of concluding that an event is cause by another event simply because it follow sit

False Dilemma

a fallacy of logical argument which is committed when too few of the available alternatives are considered, and all but one are deemed impossible

Figurative Language

how authors use literal meanings to suggest nonliteral meanings


the use of a hint or clue to suggest a larger event that occurs later in the work

Freight-Train Sentences

a sentence consiting of three or more very short independent clauses joined by conjuctions


deliberate exaggeration in order to create humor or emphasis


an expression i n the usage of a language that has a meaning that cannot be derived from the conjoined literal meanings of the seperate elements

Interrogative sentences

type of sentence structure used chiefly for asking questions


type of zeugma - putting together two contrasting elments that are so unlike that the effect is suprising, witty, or even startling


a self-evident or universally recognized truth


appealing to reason in a measured, logical way


a figure of speech in which one thing is compared to another by being spoken of as thought it were that thing


Figure of speech that replaces the name of an object, person, or idea with something with which its is associated

No sequitur

Statement that does not follow logically form what it preceded


the use of words that sound like what they mean


a fallacy in which the author draw too general of a conclusion from the presented information or arguments


a fallacy in which the author obscure s or denies the complexity of the issues in an argument


figure of speech in which contadictory terms or ideas are combined


where a passage speeds up or slows down


a short story form which a lesson may be drawn


a statement which seems self contradictory, but which may be true in fact


any structure which brings together parallel elements to show the ideas in parts of sentences are of equal importance


in contemporary usage, parody is a form of satire that imitates another work of art in order to ridicule it


Appealing to the emotions


A term used to describe writing that borders on lecturing

Periodic Sentence Structure

simple sentence with details added to the beginning or interpreting the simple sentence


the attribution of human qualities to a nonhuman or inanimate object


listing in quick succession


a sentence which uses and or another conjunction to seperat the items in series


the verb and any of its objects or complements in a clause

Prepositional Phrase

consists of a preposition and its complement


a play upon words based on the multiple meanings of words

Red Herring

when an author raises an irrelevant issue to draw attention away from the real issue

Reductio Ad Absurdrum

"to reduce to the absurd" technique useful for creating a comic effect ans is also an argumentative technique

Rhetorical Question

question asked for rhetorical effect or to emphasize a point, no answer being expected


harsh, caustic personal remarks to or about someone; less subtle than irony


use of ridicule, sarcasm, irony, etc. to expose vices, abuses, etc.


Figure of speech that uses like or as, or as if to make a direct comparison between two essentially different objects, actions, or qualities.

Slippery Slope

a fallacy in which a person asserts that some event must inevitably follow from another without any argument for the inevitably of the event in question

Snob Appeal

Qualities that seem to substantiate social or intellectual pretensions

Spatial Ordering

an organizational strategy where information is organized using spatial cues such as top to bottom, etc.


character who represents a trait that is usually attributed to a particular social or racial group and who lacks individuality


when an author argues against a claim that nobody actually holds or is universally considered weak. diverts attention from real issues

Stream of Consciousness

like a first person narrator, but placing the reader inside the characters head


when a single word that governs or modifies two others must be understood differently with respect to each of those words


form reasoning in which two premises are made and a conclusion is drawn from them


figure of speech in which a part of something is used to represent a whole (wheels=car)


figure of speech in which there is a blending of different senses in describing something


grammatical structure of a sentence, the arrangement of words in a sentence


the central idea or message of a literary wotk


the main idea of a text


author's implied attitude towards its subject


word or phrase that links one idea to the next and carries the reader from sentence to sentence and paragraph to paragraph


sentence consisting of three equal parts of importance and length


statement that says less than what it means

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