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WGU - Literature

Literature Part II - Assessment

QuestionAnswer
The repetition of two or more consonant sounds in successive words in a line of verse or prose. Alliteration
The repetition of two or more vowel sounds in successive words, which creates a rhyme. Assonance
The literal, dictionary meaning of a word. Denotation
An association or additional meaning that word, image, or phrase may carry, apart from literal denotation or dictionary definition. Connotation
A long narrative poem usually composed in an elevated style tracing the adventures of a legendary or mythic hero. The are usually written in a constant form and meter throughout. Epic
A moment of insight, discovery, or revelation by which a character's life is greatly altered. Generally occurs near the end of a story. Epiphany
A conventional combination of literary form and subject matter, usually aimed at creating certain effects. A genre implies a preexisting and understanding between the artist and the reader about the purpose and rules of the work. Genre
A short poem expressing the thoughts and feelings of a single speaker. Often written in the first person. Lyric
An extended sppech by a single character. Monologue
An element that recurs significantly through a narrative. A motif can be an image, idea, theme, situation, or action. It can also refer to an element that recurs across many literary works. Motif
What a character in a story or drama wants. The reasons an author provides for a characters actions. Motivation
A poem that tells a story. One of the four traditional modes of poetry, ailing with lyrics, dramatic, and didactic. Ballads and epics are two common forms of narrative poetry. Narrative
A literary device that attempts to represent a thing or actions by the word that imitates the sound associated with it. Onomatopoeia
Latin for "mask"; a fictitious character created by an author to be the speaker of a poem, story, or novel. Always the narrator of a work and not merely a character in it. Persona
The time and place of a literary work. The setting may also include the climate and even the social, psychological, or spiritual state of the participants. Setting
An extended work of fictional prose narrative. The term novel usually implies a book-length narrative. Usually has more characters, more varied scenes, and a broader coverage of time then a short story. Novel
Refers to any literary work that - although it might factual information - is not bound by factual accuracy, but creates a narrative shaped or made up by the author's imagination. Fiction
Must be true and factual. Nonfiction
Depicts a youth who sturggles toward maturity, forming a worldview of philosphy of life. Apprenticeship Novel
Novel in which the story is told by way of letters written by one or more of the characters. Epistolary Novel
In modern terms, a prose narrative longer than a short story but shorter than a novel. Long enough to be published independently as a brief book. Novella
A type of narrative that presents the life of a likeable scoundrel who is at odds with respectable society. Rarely has a tight plot, and the episodes or adventures follow in a loose chronological order. Picaresque Novel
Familiar in Elizabethan drama, a second story or plotline that is complete and interesting in its own right, often doubling or inverting the main plot. Broadens perspective on the main plot to enhance rather than dilute its effect. Subplot
The opening portion of a narrative or drama; the scene is set, the proteagonist in introduced, and the author discloses any other background information necessary to allow the reader to understand and relate to the events that are to follow. Exposition
The central struggle between two or more forces in a story. Conflict
Conflict between two forms of like beings. Man Vs. Man
Conflict between a character and a force of nature. Man Vs. Nature
Conflict between main characters or group of main characters again social traditions or concepts. Man Vs. Society
Conflict between a character and himself, internally. Man Vs. Self
The moment of recognition occurs when ignorance gives way to knowledge, illusion to disillusion. Recognition
In plot construction, the technique or arranging events and information in such a way that later events are prepared for, or shadowed, beforehand. The author may introduce specific words, images, or actions in order to suggest significant later events. Foreshadowing
The part of a play or narrative, including the exposition, in which events start moving towards a climax. Rising Action
The point in a drama when the crucial action, decision, or realization must be made, marking the turning point or reversal of the protagonist's fortunes. Crisis
The moment of greater intensity in a story, which almost inevitably occurs toward the end of the work. Climax
The events in a narrative that follow the climax and bring the story to its conclusion, or denouement. Falling Action
The resolution or conclusion of a literary work as plot complications are unraveled after the climax. Denouement
The central character in a literary work. Protagonist
The most significant character or force that oppposes the protagonist in a narrative or drama. Antagonist
The central character in a narrative. Hero
A protagonist who is lacking in one or more of the conventional qualities attributed to a hero. Antihero
A common or stereotypical character that occurs frequently in literature. Stock Character
Describes a character with only one outstanding trait, rarely the central characters in a narrative and they stay the same throughout the story. Flat Character
A complex character who is presented in depth and detail in a narrative; those who change significantly during the course of the narrative. Round Characters
A story in which the narrator is aparticipant in the action. First Person
Tells a story without describing any character's throughs, emotions, fellings; it gives an objective and unbiased point of view. Third Person Objective
Narrator knows the thoughts and feelings of a single character, while other characters are presented externally. Third Person Limited
Tale told from the point of view of a storyteller who has no part in the sotry but knows all the facts, including character thoughts and fellings. Third Person Omniscient
A statement in which the speaker or writer says the opposite of what is realy meant. Verbal Irony
Says that something is about to happen to a character or characters who expect the opposite outcome. Irony of Situation
A special kind of suspenseful expectation, when the audience or reader understands the implication and meaning of a situation onstage and foresees the oncoming disaster or triumph but the character does not. Dramatic Irony
A direct address to someone or something, used to address an inanimate object, a dead or absent person, an abstract thing, or a spirit. Apostrophe
A poetic device using eleborate comparisions, such as equating a loved one with the graces and beauties of the world. Conceit
Overstatement; exaggeration used to emphasize a point. Hyperbole
A statement that one thing is something else, which in, in a literal sense, it is not. Creates a close association between the two entities and usally underscores some important similarity between them. Metaphor
Firgure of speech in which the name of a thing is substitued for that of another closely associated with it. Metonymy
A statement that at first strikes one as self-contradictory, but that on reflection reveals some deeper sense; often achieved through a play on words. Paradox
A figure of speech in whih a thing, an animal, or an abstract term is endowed with human characteristics. Personification
A comparision of two things, indicated by some connective, usually like, as, than, or a verb such as resembles. (ex. Cool as a cucumber.) Simile
The use of a significant part of a thing to stand for the whole of it or vice versa. Synecdoche
A figure of speech in which the poet attributes some characteristic of a thing to another thing closely associated with it. Transferred Epithet
An ionic figure of speech that deliberately describes something in a way that is less than the true case. Understatement
Word choice or vocabulary. Diction
The attitude toward a subject conveyed in a literary work; may be playful, sarcastic, ironic, sad, solemn, or any other possible attitude. Tone/Mood
A person, place, or thing, in a narrative that suggests meaning beyond its literal sense. Symbolism
A generally recurring subject or idea conspicuously evident in a literary work, only central subjects. Theme
The coolective set of images in a poem or other literary work. Imagery
A narrative in a verse or prose in which the literal events consistently point to a parallel sequence of symbolic ideas. Allegory
A brief reference in a text to a person, place, or thing - fictious or actual. Allusion
In drama a few words or short passage spoke in an undertone or to the audience. Aside
Any established feature or technique in literature that is commonly understood by both authors and readers. Convention
The direct respresentation of the conversation between two or more characters. Dialogue
Refers to any forced or improbably device in plot resolution. Deus ex Machina
A scene relived in a character's memory. Flashback
In plot construction, the technique of arranging events and information in such a way that later events are prepared for, or shadowed, beforehand. Foreshadwing
Narrative device of beginning a story midway in the events in depicts before explaining the context or preceding actions. In Media Res
Witty language used to convey insults or scorn. Satire
In drama, a speech by a character alone onstage in which he or she utters his or her thoughts aloud. Solilquy
A traditional and widely used verse form, especially popular for love poetry. Has a fixed form of 14 lines. Sonnet
Reproduces an actaul part of a source to support a statement or idea or to provide an example. The length of a quotation can range from a word or phrase to several paragraphs. Quotation
Act of changing or suppressing speech or writing that is considered subversive of the common good. Censorship
A restatement in your own words of the main idea in a source. Summary is used to convey the general meaning of the ideas in a source, without specific details or examples that may appear in the original. Summary
A restatement in your own words and sentence structure of a specific idea or infomration from a source. Paraphrase
In law, attacking another's reputation by a false publication (communication to a third party) tending to bring the person into disrepute. Defamation
Defamation in print, pictures, or any other visual symbols. Libel
Spoken defamation Slander
Manipulation of information to influence public opinion. Propaganda
Tradationally, a song that tells a story. Ballad
A poetic device using elaborate comparisions, such as equating a loved one with the graces and beauties of the world. Conceit
Word choice or vocabulary, refers to the class of words that an author decides is appropriate to use in a particular work. Diction
A long narrative poem usually composed in an elevated style tracing the adventure of a legendary or mythic hero. Epic
The unit of measurement in metrical poetry. Foot
A verse meter consisting of one metrical foot, or one primary stress, per line. Monometer
A verse meter consisting of two metrical feet, or two primary stresses per line. Dimeter
A verse meter consisting of three metrical feet, or three primary stresses, per line. Trimeter
A verse meter consisting of four metrical, or four primary stresses, per line. Tetrameter
A verse meter consisting of five metrical feet, of five primary stresses, per line. Pentameter
A verse meter consisting of six metrical feet, of six primary stresses, per line. Hexameter
A verse meter consisting of eight metrical feet, or eight primary stresses, per line. Octameter
The means by which a literary conveys its meaning. Form
The most common and well-known meter of unrhymed poetry in English. Blank Verse
Describes poetry that organizes its lines without meter. Free Verse
A Japanese verse form that has three unrhymed lines of five, seven, and five syllables. Haiku
A short and usually comic verse form of five anapestic lines usually rhyming aabba. Limerick
A traditional and widely used verse form, especially popular for love poetry. Has a fixed form of 14 lines written in iambic pentameter, usually made up of an octave and a concluding sestet. Sonnet
A very short poem, often comic, usually ending with some shary turn of wit or meaning. Epigram
A short lyric form of eight rhymed lines borrowed from the French. Triolet
A fixed form developed by French courtly poets of the Middle Ages in imitation of Italian folk song. Villanelle
A complex verse form in which sex end words are repeated in prescribed order through six stanzas. Sestina
The collective set of images in a poem or other literary work. Imagery
Rhyme that occurs within a line of poetry, as opposed to end rhyme. Internal Rhyme
A short poem expressing the thoughts and feelings of a single speaker. Lyric
A recurrent, regular, rhythmic, pattern in verse. Meter
A verse meter consisting of a specific recurring number of iambic feet per line. Iambic Meter
A metrical foot in verse in which an unaccented syllable is followed by an accented one. Iamb
A metrical foot in which a stressed syllable is followed by a unstressed syllable. Trochaic (Trochee)
A metrical foot in verse in which two unstressed syllables are followed by a stressed syllable. Anapestic
A metrical foot of verse in which one stressed syllable is followed by two unstressed syllables. Dactylic
An extended sppech by a single character. Monologue
A pem that tells a story; one of the four traditional modes of poetry. Narrative Poetry
Any recurrent pattern of rhyme within an individual; poem or fixed form. Rhyme Scheme
A full rhyme in which the sounds following the initial letters of the words are identical in sounds. Exact Rhyme
A rhyme in which the final consonant sounds are the same but the vowel sounds are different. Slant Rhyme
Rhyme that occurs at the end of lines, rather than within them. End Rhyme
A practice used to describe rhythmic patterns in a poem by separating the metrical feet, counting the syllables, marking the accents, and indicating the pauses. Scansion
A verse form in which the poet establishes a pattern of certain number of syllables to a line. Syllabic Verse
A sonnet following rhyme pattern for the eight lines, the final six lines may follow any pattern of rhymes, as long as it does not end in a couplet. Itialian (Petrarchan)
Has a rhyme scheme organized into three quatrains with a final couplet. English (Shakespearean)
A recuring pattern of two or more lines of verse, poetry's equivalent to the paragraph in prose. Stanza
A two-line stanza in poetry, usually rhymed, which tends to have lines of equal length. Couplet
A group three lines of verse, usually all ending in the same rhyme. Tercet
A stanza consisting of four lines. Quatrain
A stanza of eight lines. Octave.
An emphasis or accent placed on a syllable in speech. Stress
Any single line of poetry; a composition in lines of more or less regular rhythm. Verse
All the distinctive ways in which an author, genre, movement, or historical period uses language to create a literary work. An author's style depends on his or her characteristic use of diction, imagery, tone, syntax, and figurative language. Style
A literary device in which a discrepancy of meaning is masked beneath the surface of the language. Irony is present when a writer says one thing but means something quite the opposite. Irony
A voice or character that provides the reader with information and insight about the characters and incidents in a narrative. Narrator
The particular arrangement of actions, events, and situations that unfold in a narrative. Plot
A genre in which actual events are presented as a novel-length story, using the techniques of fiction. Nonfiction Novel
A brief, often humorous narrative told to illustrate a moral. Fable
A brief, usually allegorical narrative that teaches a moral. Parable
A short narrative without a complex plot, the word originating from the Old English talu, or "speech". Tale
A prose narrative too brief to be published in a separate volume - as novellas and novels frequently are. Short Story
The techniques a writer uses to create, reveal, or develop the characters in a narrative Characterization
A paraphrasable message or lesson implied or directly stated in a literary work. Moral
In drama, the scene is a division of the action in an act of the play. Scene
A literary work aimed at amusing an audience. Comedy
Incongruous imitation of either the style or subject matter of a serious genre, humorous due to the disparity between the treatment and the subject. Burlesque
A realistic form of comic drama that flourished with seventeenth-century playwrights such as Moliere and English Restoration dramatists. Comedy of Manners
A form of comic drama developed by guilds of professional Italian actors in the mid-sixteenth century. Commedia
A type of comedy featuring exaggerated character types in ludicrous and improbable situations, provoking belly laughs with sexual mix-ups, crude verbal jokes, pratfalls, and knockabout horseplay. Farce
A comic genre evoking so-called intellectual or thoughtful laughter from an audience that remains emotionally detached from the play's depiction of the folly, pretense, and incongruity of human behavior. High Comedy
A comic style arousing laughter through jokes, slapstick humor, sight gags, and boisterous clowning. Low Comedy
A form of comic drama in which the plot focuses on one or more pairs of lovers who overcome difficulties to achieve a happy ending. Romantic Comedy
A kind of farce, featuring pratfalls, pie throwing, fisticuffs, and other violent action. Slapstick Comedy
A genre using derisive humor to ridicule human weakness and folly or attack political injustices and incompetence. Satiric Comedy
The representation of serious or important actions that lead to a disastrous end for the protagonist. Tragedy
A type of drama that combines elements of both tragedy and comedy. Usually, it creates potentially tragic situations that bring the protagonists to the brink of disaster but then ends happily. Tragicomedy
Originally a stage play featuring background music and sometimes songs to underscore the emotional mood of each scene. Melodrama
Enjoyable anxiety created in the reader by the author's handling of plot. Suspense
An imagined figure inhabiting a narrative or drama. Character
In classical Greek theater architecture, "the place for dancing," a circular, level performance space at the base of a horseshoe-shaped amphitheater, where twelve, then later fifteen, young, masked, male chorus members sang and danced. Orchestra
In classical Greek staging of the fifth century B.C., the temporary wooden stage building in which actors changed masks and costumes when changing roles. Skene
Developed in sixteenth-century Italian playhouses, the picture-frame stage held the action within a proscenium arch, a gateway standing "in front of the scenery". Picture-Frame Scene
Separating the auditorium from the raised stage and the world of the play, the architectural picture frame or gateway in traditional European theatres from the sixteenth-century on. Proscenium Arch
The minstrels of the late Middle Ages. Originally, troubadours were lyrics poets living in Southern France and northern Italy who sang to aristocratic audiences mostly of chivalry and love. Trabadours
A fixed form developed by French courtly poets of the Middle Ages in imitation of Italian folk song. Villanelle
A form of comic drama developed by guilds of professional Italian actors in the mid-sixteenth century. Commedia Dell'arte
A short secular song for three or more voices arranged in counterpoint. Madrigal
A modern, nontraditional performance space in which the audience surrounds the stage on four sides. Arena Theatre
Post World War II European genre depicting the grotesquely comic plight of human beings throw by accident into an irrational and meaningless world. Theatre of the Absurd
The term has two related meanings. First, it originally referred to the greatest period of Roman literature under the Emperor Augustus. Second, it refers to the early eighteenth century in English literature, a neoclassical period. Augustan Age
The tradition within a culture that transmits narratives by word of mouth from one generation to another. Oral Tradition
Acting on the stage without speech, using only posture, gesture, bodily movement, and exaggerated facial expressions to mimic a character's actions and express feelings. Pantomime
Anglicisized as peripety, Greek for "sudden change." Reversal of fortune. Peripeteia
In Renaissance theater, a mimed dramatic performance whose purpose is to prepare the audience for the main action of the play to follow. Dumb Show
A type of contemporary narrative in which the magical and mundane are mixed in an overall context of realistic storytelling. Magical Realism
Aeschylus Prometheus Bound
Euripides Medea
Homer Odyssey
Virgil The Aeneid
Ovid Metamorphose
Horacew The Odes
Sappho Hymn To
Aristophanes Lysistrata
Sophocles Antigone
Geoffrey Chaucer The Centerbury
Unknown Beowulf
Anna Comnena Alexiad
William Langland Piers Plowman
Sir Thomas Le Morte d'Arthur
Margery Kempe The Book of Margery Kempe
John Gower Vox Clementis
Juan Ruiz The Book of Good Love
Lady Mary Wroth The Countesse of Mountgomeries Urania
Sir Phillip Sydney Astrophel and Stella
John Donne A Valediction: Forbidding
Michael Drayton Since There's No Help, Come Let Us Kiss and Part
Ben Johnson To Celia
Edmund Spenser The Faerie Queene
John Milton Paradise Lost
William Shakespeare Romeo and Juliet
Christopher Marlowe Dr. Faustus
John Gay The Beggar's Opera
Anne Bradstreet The Author to Her Book
Jonathon Swift Gulliver's Travels
Thomas Gray An Elegy Written In A Country Churchyard
Daniel Defoe Robinson Crusoe
Robert Herrick To The Virgins, To Make
Henry Fielding Tom Jones
Alexander Pope The Rape Of The Lock
John Dryden Mack Flecknoe
William Congreve The Way Of The World
Herman Melville Moby Dick
Mary Shelley Frankenstein
Charlotte Bronte Jane Eyre
Samuel Taylor The Rime Of The Ancient Mariner
Thomas Hardy Tess Of The d'Urbervilles
Charles Dickens Great Expectations
John Keats To Autumn
George Eliot Middlemarch
Mark Twain The Adventures Of Huckleberry Finn
Walt Whitman Leaves of Grass
Emily Dickinson Because I could Nop Stop For Death
Kate Chopin The Awakening
Nathaniel Hawthorne The Scarlet Letter
Jane Austen Pride and Prejudice
Ezra Pound The Cantos
Virginia Wolfe Mr. Dalloway
Alice Walker The Color Purple
J.D. Salinger The Catcher In The Rye
James Joyce Ulysses
William Faulkner The Sound And The Fury
E.E. Cummings Anyone Lived In A Pretty How Town
T.S. Eliot The Love Song of J. Alfred Pruforck
Gwnedolyn Brooks We Real Cool
Anne Sexton Cinderella
Sylvia Plath The Bell Jar
William Butler Yeats The Second Coming
Langston Hughes Theme For English B
John Steinbeck The Grapes Of Wrath
Authur Miller The Crucible
F. Scott Fitzgerald The Great Gatsby
Ernest Hemingway A Farewell to Arms
Robert Frost Fire and Ice
Wilfred Owen Anthem For Doomed
Kurt Vonnegut Slaughterhouse-Five
Toni Morrison Beloved
Norman Mailer The Executioner's Song
Terrance McNally Angels In America
Literary criticism that tries to formulate general principles rather than discuss specific texts. Literary Theory
A school of criticism which argues that literature may only be discussed on its own terms; that is, without outside influences or information Formalist Criticism
A method of analysis involving careful step-by-step explication of a poem in order to understand how various elements work together. Close Reading
The practice of analyzing a literary work by using knowledge of the author's life to gain insight. Biographical Criticism
A factual account of a person's life, examining all available information or texts relevant to the subject. Biography
The practice of analyzing a literary work through investigating three major areas: the nature of literary genius, the psychological study of a particular artist, and the analysis of fictional characters. Psycholoigcal Criticism
The practice of analyzing a literary work by looking for recurrent universal patterns; explores the artist's common humanity by tracing how the individual imagination uses myths and symbols that are shared by different cultures and epochs Mythological Criticism
A recurring symbol, character, landscape, or event found in myth and literature across different cultures and eras. Archetype
The practice of analysis a literary work by examining the cultural, economic, and political context in which it was written or received. Sociological Criticism
Gender criticism examines how sexual identity influences the creation, interpretation, and evaluation of literary works. Gender Criticism
The practice of analyzing a literary work by describing what happens in the reader's mind while interpreting the text. Reader-Response Criticism
A school of criticism that rejects that traditional assumption that language can accurately represent reality. Deconstructional Criticism
A contemporary interdisciplinary field of academic study that focuses on understanding the social power encoded in "texts." Cultural Studies
The practice of analyzing a literary work by investigating the social, cultural, and intellectual context that produced it - a context that necessarily includes the author's biography and milieu. Historical Criticism
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