Sandra Cisneros

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

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One literary device Cisneros uses in the short story "Eleven" is the diction of a child. Cisneros captures the voice and cadence of a real eleven-year-old. For example, she begins a sentence with "like," just as a child of that age might, and uses the word "stupid." This helps readers to believe they are overhearing the child's actual thoughts:

Like some days you might say something stupid, and that's the part of you that's still ten.

Cisnero uses the literary device of simile—a comparison that uses the words "like" or "as"—to capture the experience of an eleven-year-old, such as when the narrator compares being eleven to the rattle of "pennies in a tin Band-Aid box." We can imagine a child that age saving pennies and keeping them in an old Band-Aid box. (Maybe today it would quarters, but the idea is the same.)

Another literary device employed is polysyndeton . This means stringing together a series of conjunctions, such as "and." Cisernos uses this in the following to convey a sense of...

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