Sandra Cisneros

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What are the literary devices in the short story "Eleven" by Sandra Cisneros?

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The narrator wants to convey the horrendous sight of the red sweater which causes the central conflict in the story, so she utilizes vivid imagery to capture its ugliness:

It's an ugly sweater with red plastic buttons and a collar and sleeves all stretched out like you could use it for a jump rope. It's maybe a thousand years old...

This description, along with the fact that it "smells like cottage cheese," helps readers to empathize with being forced to wear a sweater not your own simply to pacify the authoritative adult in this situation.

There is also an example of hyperbole in that line of being "a thousand years old" to further capture the narrator's horror with being forced to wear a ratty old sweater.

The fact that the conflict happens on the narrator's birthday shows situational irony . On a day when she should be celebrated and when she keeps reminding herself of all the good things that await her, she doesn't even want to be eleven. She wants to be just about any other age so that she...

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