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literary terms 1-30

plot the series of related actions or events in a literary work
sequence the arrangement of events in a literary work
conflict struggle between opposing forces; any problem that must be solved
internal and external the two major types of conflict
internal conflict a problem or struggle within a character
external conflict a problem or struggle between a character and someone or something outside of the character
exposition establishes the setting, identifies the characters, introduces the basic situation (problem may be revealed here)
initiating incident introduces the central conflict (sometimes it occurs before the opening of the story)
rising action any events leading up to the climax
climax point of highest interest, conflict must be resolved one way or another or a character takes action to end the conflict
falling action events that occur between the climax and the conclusion
conclusion/resolution the story's end
setting the time and place of the story (where and when it takes place)
suspense the quality of the story that makes the reader curious and excited about what will happen next
foreshadowing an author's use of hints or clues to suggest events that will occur later in the story
flashback presents events of the past in the midst of a story in the present
mood the feeling created in a reader by a literary work or passage
tone the attitude toward the subject and audience conveyed by the language and rhythm of the speaker in a literary work
character a person or animal who takes part in the action of a literary work
protagonist the main character in a literary work
antagonist a character or force in conflict with the main character
round character this character is fully developed – the writer reveals good and bad traits as well as background
flat character this character seems to possess only one or two personality traits – little or no background is revealed
dynamic character this character changes as a result of the action in the story
static character this character stays the same throughout the story
trait one of the qualities that makes up a character's personality
character motivation a reason that explains, or partially explains a character's thoughts, feelings, actions or speech
dialogue conversation between characters
dialect a form of language spoken by people in a particular region or group
jargon the special words or terms used by the members of a particular profession or class
slang an informal, often short-lived kind of language used in place of standard words
informal language the language of everyday speech, may use contractions and slang
formal language the standard language of written communication, formal speeches; may not use contractions or slang
narrator the speaker or character who tells the story
point of view the relationship between the narrator and the story he/she is telling - the perspective from which the story is told
prose the ordinary form of writing; most writing that is not poetry, drama, or song
fiction prose writing that tells about imaginary characters and events
nonfiction prose writing that presents and explains ideas about real people, places, objects or events
fantasy highly imaginative writing that has elements not found in real life
biography a form of nonfiction in which a writer tells the life story of another person
autobiography a form of nonfiction in which a writer tells his or her own life story
Created by: gjackson