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AP Lit terms

TermDefinition
cacophony harsh discordance of sound
elegy a mournful piece of writing especially a funeral song or a lament for the dead.
caesura a break usually near the middle of a verse.
enjambment the running on of the thought from one line, couplet, or stanza to the next without a break.
feminine rhyme a rhyme of two syllables of which the second is unstressed.
anaphora repetition of a word or phrase at the beginning of back to back sentences.
synecdoche a figure of speech in which a part is used for the whole or the whole for a part.
euphony pleasing sound to the ear, especially a pleasant sounding
sibilance noting sounds like those spelled with s.
Euphemism the substitution of a mild, indirect, or vague expression for one thought to be offensive, harsh, or blunt.
Malapropism an act or habit of misusing words .
Aesthetics the branch of philosophy dealing with the beautiful, the ugly, the sublime,etc.
Ambiguity doubtfulness or uncertainty of meaning.
Aside A device in which a character in a drama makes a short speech which is heard by the audience but not by other characters in the play
Asyndeton a reversal in the order of words.
Canon a Greek word that implies rule or law and is used in literature as the source which regulates which selection of authors or works would be considered important pieces of literature.
Catharsis describes the release of the emotions of pity and fear by the audience.
Chiasmus a reversal in the order of words in two otherwise parallel phrases.
Colloquialism spoken or written communication that seeks to imitate informal speech
Denotation the explicit or direct meaning or set of meanings of a word or expression.
Deus Ex Machina An unrealistic or unexpected intervention to rescue the protagonists.
Dystopia a society characterized by human misery.
Epigraph A brief quotation which appears at the beginning of a literary work.
Epigram a short satirical poem dealing with a single subject and usually ending with a witty turn of thought.
Epithet In literature a word of phrase following a name which serves to describe the character.
Created by: Alishaan