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Literary Terms

10th grade ELA

Exposition The essential background information at the beginning of a literary (the set up)
Rising Action development of the conflict and complication
Climax The turning point
Falling action results or effects of the literary work
Resolution The end
Allusion a reference to something well known that exists outside of the literary work Ex. MLK Jr. Said...
Alliteration repetition of initial consonant sounds Ex: Tongue twister: She sells seashells by the seashore
Antagonist The character that is the source of the conflict (not always a person) Ex. Nature
Assonance Repetition of vowel sounds followed by a different consonant Ex. The pond is long gone.
Characterization How the author develops characters and their personalities
Conflict struggle between 2 opposing forces External: man vs man, man vs. society, man vs, nature Internal: Man vs self
dialogue direct speech between characters
dictation word choice
Figurative language language that represents on thing but means another
flashback the method of returning to an to an earlier point to help clarify or make clear
Foreshadowing hints of what is to come
genre type of category to that a literary work belongs Ex. Historical, romance, mystery
Hyperbole Exaggeration Ex. I'm as hungry as a horse
Imagery Language that uses the 5 senses
Irony a contrast to what is expected to happen and what actually happens
Metaphor implied comparison between 2 unlike objects
Mood The felling created by a literary work or passage
Motif a recurring feature of literary work that is related to the theme Ex. abandonment
Onomatopoeia Use of a word whose sound imitates the meaning Ex. zoom, vroom, hiss
Oxymoron phrase that consists of 2 words that are contradictory Ex. Living dead, girlie man
Personification non human things are given human like characteristics The tree swayed in the breeze.
plot The sequence of events
Point of View How the story is told: 1st person narrator is a character (I, me) 2nd person: narrator refers to who they are speaking to (you) 3rd person limited: narrator zooms into thoughts of 1 character 3rd person omniscient: narrator zooms into thoughts of all
protagonist Main character
rhyme repetition of similar and identical sounds
rhyme scheme patterns of lines in poetry
setting time and place
simile direct comparison using like or as
soliloquy a dramatic device in which a character is alone and speaks his or her thoughts aloud
speaker voice in a poem: the person or thing that is speaking
stanza group of lines forming a unit in a poem Example: “paragraph”
Suspense technique that keeps the reader guessing what will happen next
Symbol/Symbolism one thing (object, person, place) used to represent something else Example: American flag = freedom
Theme and Central Idea the underlying main idea of a literary work Theme differs from the subject of a literary work in that it involves a statement or opinion about the subject Example: Money doesn’t buy happiness
Tone the author’s attitude toward the subject of a work Example: Sarcastic
Created by: shann1



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