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What are three types of figurative language in the book Monster by Walter Dean Myers?

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aprilcasten | eNotes Newbie

Posted October 19, 2013 at 10:51 PM via iOS

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What are three types of figurative language in the book Monster by Walter Dean Myers?

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literaturenerd | High School Teacher | (Level 2) Educator Emeritus

Posted October 22, 2013 at 12:50 AM (Answer #1)

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Walter Dean Myers includes numerous different types of figurative language in his novel Monster. 

First, Myers includes imagery in the novel. Imagery is the use of descriptive language which appeals to the senses of the reader in order to help the reader create a mental image of what is being described. The opening scene of the novel exemplifies imagery. 

"The best time to cry is at night, when the lights are out and someone is being beaten up and screaming for help."

Here, Myers appeals to a reader's sense of sight (night) and sound (screaming). 

Allusion is also included in the text. An allusion is a reference to another work (thought to be known to the reader). In the novel, Star Wars is alluded to. The way that the text looks in the opening "credits" alludes to the opening of the Star Wars movie. This is important because Steve Harmon, the protagonist, openly states that "this is not a movie." 

Characterization is the way the author develops the characters within a text. In some cases, the author will use direct characterization (tell readers exactly who/what a character is). In other cases, the author will use indirect characterization (readers must infer about the character based upon actions, allusions, and dialogue). Steve characterizes himself as a monster (which is both a metaphor (comparison) and a hyperbole (an exaggeration)). That said, his actions do not support his claim. 

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