Questions and Answers for Guide to Literary Terms

Guide to Literary Terms

What are the similarities and differences between poetry and prose?

Here are the simplified definitions of prose and poetry: Prose--the ordinary, matter-of-fact, ordinary form of language Poetry--the art of rhythmical composition for exciting pleasure by...

Latest answer posted August 1, 2015 12:00 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is a simile and metaphor?

A simile is a comparison of two things using the words "like" or "as." For example: He was as big as a house. The party was like a funeral. A metaphor is a direct comparison of two things...

Latest answer posted January 30, 2009 5:54 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What are some examples of metaphors to describe someone? What are examples of metaphors describing someone who has...

A metaphor is a comparison of two unalike things—where one thing is said to be the other. It does not use the words like or as, as a simile would do, and it often does not even include a variant of...

Latest answer posted September 1, 2019 8:41 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What are some good metaphors or similes that reveal intelligence, determination, motivation, strength, perfection or...

I have compiled a list of similes and metaphors that could generally fall into one of these topics: O, speak again, bright angel, for thou artAs glorious to this night, being o’er my head,As is a...

Latest answer posted September 7, 2019 12:24 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the difference between an essay and a paragraph?

There is a significant difference between an essay and a paragraph. A paragraph is generally fairly short. It should have a specific topic or theme. The body of the paragraph should explain the...

Latest answer posted October 19, 2017 11:18 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What are the similarities between the forms of drama, poetry, and the short story?

Drama, poetry, and the short story are all genres of literature that rely on exquisitely careful word choice. Drama, as a form, is written exclusively as lines spoken by different characters. These...

Latest answer posted December 18, 2017 11:29 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the difference between a literary and a nonliterary text?

There is a classical sense in which literary and nonliterary may be distinguished. This distinction is important for those studying Literature. In the context of classical literature studies,...

Latest answer posted March 1, 2013 3:22 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

I need examples of denotation and connotation. All words have a denotation and connotation. The denotation refers to...

A word’s denotation is its dictionary definition. A word’s connotation is the emotional baggage, so to speak, that it has acquired through popular usage. Consider words that we use to describe...

Latest answer posted December 17, 2020 1:24 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

Types Of Prose

Most forms of conventional writing are prose. Prose consists of grammatical sentences, organized in paragraph form. It features a natural flow of speech and no patterns of rhythm or rhyme. It is...

Latest answer posted December 6, 2020 10:49 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the difference between the novel and drama?

Most plays and movies are enacted as if they are happening in the present. The scripts are almost invariably written in the present tense. Novels and short stories are usually written in the past...

Latest answer posted January 12, 2015 1:20 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

Identify figure of speech (simile, metaphor, personification, metonymy, synecdoche, hyperbole, litotes, irony,...

3. on some bright tomorrow they will come to the end of endurance. I would say this is irony. A bright tomorrow indicates a positive end. The end of endurance sounds defeated. 4. Don't...

Latest answer posted August 14, 2009 9:08 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the difference between text and context, especially in literature?

A text refers to a specific body of words that constitute a particular piece of writing. A text can be very short, such as a sonnet, but is considered a text because it is complete in and of...

Latest answer posted December 16, 2020 11:26 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

May I please have 10 kennings for the word "school"?

Kennings are an interesting feature of Anglo-Saxon poetry that modern readers encounter in Old English works like Beowulf, The Wanderer and The Seafarer. To create kennings for "school," you'll...

Latest answer posted September 18, 2016 2:28 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What literary term means the following: An inanimate object given animate characteristics, like a talking dog or a...

This term for this is personification, I believe.

Latest answer posted August 17, 2015 1:23 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

"She is the apple of my eye" is an example of (a) metaphor (b) simile (c) personification (d) alliteration?

In language, being direct eliminates confusion and ensures that miscommunication is minimized. However, when subtlety or emphasis is needed or creativity is required or perhaps a reader or receiver...

Latest answer posted June 29, 2015 8:22 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

Features Of Prose

Prose can be best defined formally and can be defined in contrast to poetry and to other forms of writing (like certain lists or certain kinds of directions/instructions). "Prose - the ordinary...

Latest answer posted August 16, 2015 5:45 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the difference between sematic and lexical field, if any?

Within the study of linguistics, semantics examines the meaning of words and sentences. A semantic field is thus the range of words that is employed to discuss some common topic. For example, the...

Latest answer posted December 29, 2020 2:10 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

Critical Appreciation

Critical appreciation is analyzing a work to evaluate its contents and explain why it should be appreciated. While it's easy to like something, showing a critical justification for your...

Latest answer posted October 10, 2017 1:16 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What are the features of mock epic?

Mock epic is a poetic genre derived from the epic, a genre invented by Homer that sought to immortalise the deeds of heroes and gods through poetry. However, where traditional epics like Homer's...

Latest answer posted January 8, 2021 11:18 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the name given to a person who can't read and write?

While one does typically hear the word illiterate to describe an individual who can neither read nor write, there are other possibilities. I've also heard the word unlettered to describe such a...

Latest answer posted October 28, 2017 6:31 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the function of intonation?

In linguistics, intonation refers to the way in which a speaker varies his or her pitch when pronouncing words. Along with stress (the way certain words are emphasized), intonation is an element of...

Latest answer posted August 16, 2017 12:03 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What are some examples of similes and metaphors to describe a person's personality and appearance? It could either be...

To describe someone's appearance using similes, you might say that he or she is as thin as a pole, or as scruffy as a cat that's been dragged through a bush. Or you might say that he or she has...

Latest answer posted June 21, 2019 7:57 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the difference between subject matter and theme?

Subject can be related to topic while theme will always be, to some extent, conceptual. Subject matter can be topical, localized and stated often as a simple noun phrase. (Examples: the medical...

Latest answer posted August 23, 2015 5:19 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the relationship between setting and theme ?

The theme of a work of art or literature can be more subtle than its subject. The subject is the main topic, while a theme may have deeper undercurrents or be unspoken. The setting is the time and...

Latest answer posted May 3, 2016 6:27 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What are the characteristics of an ode?  

An ode is a poem in praise of something or someone. An ode can be serious or humorous, but in all instances it is thoughtful, in that the poet is exploring important aspects of the thing being...

Latest answer posted September 16, 2008 2:48 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the literary term for giving an inanimate object animal characteristics—for example "the sidewalk purred"?...

The closest answer is zoomorphism, which is giving animal traits to non-animal subjects or objects, as in the sidewalk that "purrs." There is an interesting issue bubbling under the surface of this...

Latest answer posted September 6, 2019 8:49 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What does poetry appreciation mean? How can people appreciate poetry?

Appreciation means to recognize and/or enjoy the good qualities of someone or something. Poetry appreciation is that attitude about poetry. Some people flat out enjoy reading poetry. There...

Latest answer posted December 3, 2015 2:31 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is a difference between a novel and a short story?

It is extremely hard to define a novel. Perhaps impossible. Once an authority had offered a definition, some writer would be sure to come out with a novel that contradicted it. Henry James once...

Latest answer posted July 27, 2015 11:23 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

Passive Voice Of Do It

This is a good question! In order to have the passive voice, words need to be arranged so that what would ordinarily be the subject in the sentence, the word that performs the action, is relegated...

Latest answer posted September 10, 2009 4:02 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What effects does the use of first person point of view cause on a story?

When a story is written in first person point of view, the information the reader receives is seen only through the eyes of the narrator. Our perceptions are based on those of the speaker, so our...

Latest answer posted September 28, 2011 2:04 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the definition of the word 'agency' in literature?

This is a great question. Agency is often times a term used in either philosophy and sociology, however it can be used in a literature sense as well. What agency means, is essentially the freedom...

Latest answer posted January 22, 2014 7:24 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What are the differences between rhetorical and literary devices, and what are some examples of both of them?  

The distinction is basically artificial. Historically, the notion of the "figures" originated in Graeco-Roman education. This educational system included "grammar" as the main part of the secondary...

Latest answer posted December 29, 2015 11:52 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What are the literary elements of plot, characterization, setting, and point of view?

Plot is the overall story line of a piece of fiction. It is what you would talk about if someone asked you what happened in the story. Plots typically consist of set elements such as rising...

Latest answer posted January 11, 2010 5:19 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the function of chorus in drama?

In the early days of Greek drama there was only one actor on stage, playing all the different parts. The introduction of the chorus, then, was largely practical. It provided the audience with a...

Latest answer posted October 21, 2017 9:55 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is a literary movement?

A literary movement is a general term for pieces of literature by different authors (usually over the same time period) who share a similar impetus for writing in some way. Usually these authors...

Latest answer posted February 5, 2015 9:03 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the effect of staccatoo sentences in writing? effect of asyndeton, anaphora?

Staccato sentences can be used for a variety of effects in writing; they are, by nature, short and often emphatic. For example: "I said no." "Just no." "No!" This series of three staccato sentences...

Latest answer posted February 21, 2018 7:44 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What are the differences and similarities between poetry, drama, and short stories?

Let's start with drama. Drama is different from the other two forms in that a story is told through dialogue. There can be stage directions and information about how certain pieces of dialogue...

Latest answer posted November 22, 2018 9:03 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

Figurative language in "Bohemian Rhapsody": can someone help me get the figurative language from the song "Bohemian...

The lyrics to "Bohemian Rhapsody" by Freddie Mercury are enigmatic and open to interpretation. Thus what one listener might take as literal language could be taken as figurative language by someone...

Latest answer posted June 10, 2020 4:29 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What are the definitions of the types of words simple, compound and complex?

A complex word is defined as a base word combined with a derivational element, such as an affix or a suffix. I.E, the word live + ly= lively. There are four origins that explain the formation of...

Latest answer posted March 2, 2013 11:43 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the difference between summary notes and prose summary?

A "prose summary" is a short statement that expresses the main ideas of a passage. These statements provide an overview of the major ideas in a reading passage and leave out minor ideas or details....

Latest answer posted April 9, 2017 12:34 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What are the general forms of prose and its types? What are the the styles of prose (e.g., common style and cheap...

Prose is defined as anything which is not written in verse. Thus, the first step in defining prose is to define what is meant by the term "verse" or "poetry." Verse is defined by having meter or an...

Latest answer posted September 6, 2019 8:39 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

When typing a letter, is the "Sincerely" part of it indented, or left justified?

The format of a letter really depends on what type of letter you are writing. If you are writing a business letter you would use the block formatting where everything is lined up on the left hand...

Latest answer posted February 3, 2009 9:42 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is a metaphor? Can you give some examples?

A metaphor is literary tool used to compare two things, without the use of the words like or as.

Latest answer posted May 20, 2015 5:00 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

The main character in a story is also called-

The main character in a work of literature is also known as the protagonist. The protagonist is not necessarily the "good guy," just as the antagonist is not always the "bad guy." An antagonist...

Latest answer posted January 27, 2018 9:47 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

Foregrounding

Foregrounding is a literary concept borrowed from Russian Formalism and developed by formalist Jan Mukařovský who called it aktualisace, which has been translated to English as foregrounding....

Latest answer posted October 11, 2010 10:10 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the effect of Situational Irony? What is the effect of Situational Irony?Dramatic Irony?I know what they...

Sometimes the effect of situational irony is humorous; at other times it is tragic. But it is almost always shocking. Either the protagonist or the reader is surprised. Nadine Gordimer's short...

Latest answer posted March 7, 2010 8:50 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

How does character develop theme?

Characters develop theme in a variety of ways: Sometimes, characters help develop a theme because of their unique perspectives. In To Kill a Mockingbird, Scout Finch tells the story of Tom...

Latest answer posted August 7, 2019 7:42 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

Create a metaphor to describe a person's personality, elaborating on three points that explain its signficance.  

Pulling metaphors out of thin air is often difficult and intimidating. To help you creat metaphors that describe someon's personality, I suggest going through the following brainstorm. This has...

Latest answer posted February 11, 2011 2:30 am UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the difference between direct and indirect character revelation?

Direct character revelation occurs when the author directly tells readers details about a character. The author may tell readers that the character is tall and thin with striking gray eyes that...

Latest answer posted September 22, 2017 11:46 pm UTC

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Guide to Literary Terms

What is the difference between poetic devices and figures of speech?  Is alliteration a poetic device or figure of...

There are many more poetic devices than there are figures of speech because figures of speech are actually poetic devices (which is a much broader category). A poetic device could be something as...

Latest answer posted March 16, 2018 11:58 pm UTC

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