Literary Terms: List 1 Flashcards Preview

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Plot

The structure of a story; the sequence in which the author arranges events In a story.

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Basic situation

The beginning of the story where the problem is often established; characters and basic setting are revealed.

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Rising action

The portion of a story in which conflict intensifies, leading to The climax (often contains many complications)

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Rock bottom

Where circumstances cannot get any worse for a main character.

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Climax

The highest point of interest in a story; the moment with the most psychological or physical intensity; the turning point thAt determines the outcome of the conflict. The reader wonders what happens next; will the conflict be resolved or not?

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Falling action

The events and complications begin to resolve themselves. The reader knows what has happened next and if he conflict was resolved or not (events between the climax and denouement).

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Denouement

The final outcome or untangling of events in a story

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Resolution

The part of the story or drama which occurs after the climax and which establishes a new norm, a new state of affairs; the ways the ways things are going to be from then on.

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Setting

The time and place in which a story unfolds

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Allusion

A reference ti a statement, person, place or thing well known from literature, history, religion, pop-culture etc.

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Antagonist

A character or force that goes against the main character (protagonist) and and tries to stop him/her from achieving their goal.

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Protagonist

The hero or central character of a literary work; the one who "drives the action"

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Suspense

Tension in the story, as well as the feeling of growing uncertainty about the outcome of events (what will "happen next") in a story.

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Denotation

The literal, dictionary definition of a word

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Connotation

All the meanings, associations, or emotions that a word suggests.

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Imagery

A work or group of words, which appeal to one or more of the senses: sight, taste, touch, hearing, and smell. Imagery types include VISUAL, TACTILE, OLFACTORY, AURAL, and GUSTATORY.

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Atmosphere

The mood or feeling created in the reader by a literary work or passage.

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Conflict

Occurs when some person or force in the play opposes the protagonist.

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External Conlfict

A character struggles against an outside force

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Types of External Conflict

Man vs. man
Man vs. nature
Man vs. society

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Internal Conflict

A struggle within one's self; a person must make some decision, Overcome pain, resist an urge, quiet their temper, etc.

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Example of Internal Conflict

Man vs. himself

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Characterization

The process of revealing the personality of a character in a story

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Direct Characterization

The author tells directly what a character is like

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Indirect Characterization

The author shows what a character is like

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Methods of Indirect Characterization

1. Speech
2. Appearance
3. Inner thoughts and feelings
4. What others think or say about the character
5. Actions

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Exposition

Background information about the character, setting, and situation that is needed for the reader to move forward with a story

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Round (Character)

A realistic that has many different character traits; fully-developed; three-dimensional

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Flat (Character)

A character that, having only one or two traits is easily described and one-dimensionional (like a Cardboard figure)

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Dynamic (character)

A character that changes in some important way as a result of something that happens in the story. Change may involve some n knowledge or a different way of behaving or feeling.

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Static (Character)

A character who remains the same or changes very little from beginning to end

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Atmosphere

The mood of a story

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Tone

Attitude of narrator/character

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What are the five types of imagery?

Visual
Olfactory
Gustatory
Aural
Tactile

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Visual imagery

WHat the readers can see

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Olfactory imagery

What the readers can smell

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Gustatory imagery

What the readers can taste

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Aural imagery

What the readers can hear

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Tactile imagery

What the readers touch

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First person narraitor

Story is told from main character's POV; uses first person pronouns

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Subject

The topic of the story

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Theme

The central idea of a story

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Irony

A contrast or discrepancy between expectation and reality

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Another name for situational irony

Simple irony

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Situational irony

When a situation that is expected to happen or that is intended to happen is the opposite of what actually does happen

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Verbal irony

A writers or speaker says one thing, but really means something completely different;

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Another word for verbal irony

Sarcasm

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Dramatic irony

Occurs when the audience or reader knows something that a character in the play or story does not know

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What is the origin for the word "irony"?

The Greek word "eronea", which means "a withholding of knowledge"

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Third person omniscient narrator

All knowing... The narrator can see into the minds of all characters; Godlike Narrator he/she can enter character's mind and know everything that is going on past/present/future

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First person narrator

Uses: I, me, my, we, our... (First person pronouns); Story is told from main character's POV

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Second person narrator

Uses: you, yours, your, yourself... (second-person pronouns); Uses you and presents commands

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Third person narrator

A narrator tells the story on the third person

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Third person limited narrator

Narrator can see into one character's mind;
All characters have thought privacy except one;
Gives the impression that we are very close to the mind of that one character, though from a distance

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Third person objective narrator

Narrator only describes, and does not enter character's thoughts

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Motif

A reoccurring thematic element in a work

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Foreshadowing

THe use of clues to hint at what will happen later in the plot

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Diction

A writer or speakers choice of words

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Flashback

A scene in a literary work or drama that interrupts the present action of the plot to "flash backward" and tell what happened at an earlier time

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Point of view

Who is telling the story and how much they contribute

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Symbol

A person, place, thing, or event that stands for itself and for something beyond itself as well

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Social/ Historical Context

What is happening in the world at the time of the story