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is the act of creating and developing a character

Direct Characterization

author directly states a character's traits

Indirect Characterization

author tells what a character looks like, does, and says, as well as how other characters react to him/her


main character in a literary work


is a character or force in conflict with a main character


is the high point of interest or suspense.

Figurative Language

of the nature of or involving a figure of speech, not literal


a device in a literary work by which an event or scene taking place before the present time in the narrative is inserted into the chronological structure of the work


is the use in a literary work of clues that suggest events that have yet to occur


the formation of mental images, figures, or likenesses of things, or of such images collectively


the process of deriving the strict logical consequences of assumed premises


the use of words to convey a meaning that is opposite of its literal

Irony of the Situation

a situation in which there is an incongruity between appearance and reality, or between expectation and fulfillment, or between the actual situation and what would seem appropriate

Verbal Irony

is a rhetorical device, literary technique, or situation in which there is an incongruity or discordance that goes beyond the simple and evident meany of words or actions

Dramatic Irony

irony that occurs when the meaning of the situation is understood by the audience or reader but not by the characters


feeling created in the reader by a literary work or passage


a statement or proposition that seems self-contradictory or absurd but in reality expresses a possible truth.


A figure of speech in which an object or animal is given human feelings, thoughts, or attitudes

First Person Narration

character in story tells story

Third Person Limited

narrative mode in which the reader experiences the story through the senses and thoughts of just one character.

Third Person Objective

narrator is an outsider who can report only when he/she sees and hears. This narrator can tell us what is happening but he/she can't tell us the thoughts of the characters.

Third Person Omniscient

narrative mode in which both the reader and author observe the situation either through the senses and thoughts of more than one character, or through an overarching godlike perspective that sees and knows everything that happens and what the characters think.


sequence of events in a literary work.


writing or speech that explains a process or presents information. Introduces the characters, the setting, and the basic situation.

Rising Action

all the events leading up to the climax


like a climax, it is a turning point in a story. It is the point at which you learn the story will not turn out the way you had expected

Falling Action

comes after the climax and leads to the resolution


a general insight or change is conveyed

Point of View

the writers choice of narrator determines this


ordinary writing as distinguished from verse


form of literature in which irony, sarcasm, and ridicule are employed to attack human vice and folly


is the time and place of the action in a literary work


the choices a writer makes; the combination of distinctive features of a literary work


the practice of investing things with symbolic meaning


is a central messaging or insight into the life revealed through a literary work


writer's attitude toward his or her audience and subject


a figure of speech in which an expression is used to refer to something that it does not literally denote in order to suggest a similarity


is a struggle between opposing forces

Internal Conflict vs. External Conflict

character in a conflict with himself/herself vs. character struggles against an outside force

Man vs. Man

main character vs. another character in story

Man vs. Nature

main character vs. some type of natural disaster

Man vs. Self

main character vs. himself/herself

Man vs. Society

main character vs. society or a large group of people

Figurative vs. Literal Language

nature of speech including figures of speech vs. words do not deviate from their defined meaning


a figure of speech that expresses a resemblance between things of different kinds (usually formed with 'like' or 'as')

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