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Literary terms

Terms

undefined, object
copy deck
motif
a recurring image or phrase in the story
point of view
the way in which a story is narrated (first-person, third-person omniscient, or third-person limited)
simile
a stated comparison introduced by like, as, so, as if, as though
irony
a contrast between what appears to be and what is
verbal irony
speaker says one thing and means something entirely different
foreshadowing
hints of what is to come in the story
atmosphere
the prevailing mental and emotional climate of the story; something the reader senses or feels
theme
the central insight or underlying idea of a story
personification
an inanimate object, quality, or idea is given lifelike characteristics or powers
setting
the time and place of the events in a story
Rising action
advancing movement toward an event or moment when something decisive has to happen
Exposition
the part of a story in which the author provides background material about the lives of the characters and about events that have taken place before the story opens
Resolution or denouement
the part of the plot that reveals the outcome of the conflict
Conflict
- the struggle of opposing forces, people, or ideas in a story (external or internal; person v. person, person v. nature, person v. self, person v. society, or a combination of these)
allusion
a reference to a person, place, event, or artistic work that the author expects the reader to recognize (drawn from literature, history, geography, scripture, or mythology)
Characterization
the techniques an author uses to develop the personalities of fictional characters so that they seem believable.
Plot
the sequence of events in the story consisting of a beginning, middle, and end
Falling action
the sequence of events that follow the climax and lead to the resolution
protagonist
the main character of the story
Climax
the high point or turning point of a story
dramatic irony
reader perceives something that a character in the story does not know
figurative language
language not intended to be interpreted in a literal sense. Figures of speech (imaginative comparisons)
antagonist
the force or character opposing the protagonist
metaphor
a comparison between two unlike things with the intent of giving additional meaning to one of them (NO like or as)
situational irony
a discrepancy between the expected result of an action or situation and its actual result

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