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literary terms 42-82

QuestionAnswer
genre a division or type of literature – generally prose, poetry or drama
theme the message, central concern, or insight into life revealed in a literary work
stereotype a fixed, generalized idea about a character, place, or situation
symbol anything that stands for or represents something else
allusion a reference to a well-known person, place, event, literary work, or work of art within a literary work
irony the general name given to literary techniques that involve surprising, interesting, or amusing contradictions
verbal irony words are used to suggest the opposite of their usual meaning or contradict their usual meaning
situational irony an event occurs that directly contradicts the expectations of the character, the reader, or the audience (a surprise twist)
dramatic irony contradiction between what a character thinks and what the reader/ audience knows to be true
euphemism an inoffensive word or term used in place of another that is felt to be offensive
idiom an expression having a special meaning different from the usual meanings of the words (example – "hit the road")
figurative language writing or speech that is not meant to be taken literally
figures of speech types of figurative language
simile a figure of speech that makes a direct comparison between two unlike subjects using like or as
metaphor a figure of speech that makes an indirect comparison between two unlike subjects
hyperbole a figure of speech that is an exaggeration for effect
personification a figure of speech in which a non-human subject is given human characteristics
alliteration the repetition of consonant sounds at the beginning of words
onomatopoeia the use of words that imitate sounds
stanza a division of poetry similar to a paragraph in prose
refrain a regularly repeated line or group of lines in a poem or song
author's purpose the author's intent either to inform/teach, to entertain, or to persuade/convince the audience
voice the fluency, rhythm and liveliness in writing that makes it unique to the writer
satire literary tone used to ridicule or make fun of human vice or weakness
primary source text that tells a first-hand account of an event; original works used when researching (letters, journals)
secondary source text used when researching that is derived from something original (biographies, magazine articles)
text structure the author's method of organizing text
inference understanding gained by "reading between the lines;" judgment based on reasoning rather than direct statement
imagery a word or group of words in a literary work which appeal to one or more of the senses
bias a judgment based on personal point of view
generalization a conclusion that is used to make a broad statement about a topic or person
editorial a newspaper or magazine article that gives the opinions of the editors or publishers
propaganda techniques used to influence people to believe, buy, or do something
name-calling an attack on a person instead of an issue
bandwagon tries to persuade the reader to do, think, or buy something because it is popular or everyone is doing it
red herring an attempt to distract the reader with details not relevant to the argument
emotional appeal tries to persuade the reader by using words that appeal to the reader's emotions instead of to logic or reason
testimonial attempts to persuade the reader by using a famous person to endorse a product or idea
sweeping generalization makes an oversimplified statement about a group based on limited information
circular argument states a conclusion as part of the proof of the argument
appeal to numbers, facts, and statistics attempts to persuade the reader by showing how many people think something is true
Created by: gjackson on 2008-12-21



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