Pun: play on words; the humorous use of a word emphasizing different meanings or applications.
Purpose: the intended result wished by an author.
Realism: writing about the ordinary aspects of life in a straightfoward manner to reflect life as it actually is.
Refrain: a phrase or verse recurring at intervals in a poem or song; chorus.
Requiem: any chant, dirge, hymn, or musical service for the dead.
Resolution: point in a literary work at which the chief dramatic complication is worked out; denouement.
Restatement: idea repeated for emphasis.
Rhetoric: use of language, both written and verbal in order to persuade.
Rhetorical Question: question suggesting its own answer or not requiring an answer; used in argument or persuasion.
Rising Action: plot build up, caused by conflict and complications, advancement towards climax.
Romanticism: movement in western culture beginning in the eighteenth and peaking in the nineteenth century as a revolt against Classicism; imagination was valued over reason and fact.
Satire: ridicules or condemns the weakness and wrong doings of individuals, groups, institutions, or humanity in general.
Scansion: the analysis of verse in terms of meter.
Setting: the time and place in which events in a short story, novel, play, or narrative poem occur.
Simile: a figure of speech comparing two essentially unlike things through the use of a specific word of comparison.
Soliloquy: an extended speech, usually in a drama, delivered by a character alone on stage.
Spiritual: a folk song, usually on a religious theme.
Speaker: a narrator, the one speaking.
Stereotype: cliché; a simplified, standardized conception with a special meaning and appeal for members of a group; a formula story.
Stream of Consciousness: the style of writing that attempts to imitate the natural flow of a character’s thoughts, feelings, reflections, memories, and mental images, as the character experiences them.
Structure: the planned framework of a literary selection; its apparent organization.
Style: the manner of putting thoughts into words; a characteristic way of writing or speaking.
Subordination: the couching of less important ideas in less important structures of language.
Surrealism: a style in literature and painting that stresses the subconscious or the nonrational aspects of man’s existence characterized by the juxtaposition of the bizarre and the banal.
Suspension of Disbelief: suspend not believing in order to enjoy it.
Symbol: something which stands for something else, yet has a meaning of its own.
Synesthesia: the use of one sense to convey the experience of another sense.
Synecdoche: another form of name changing, in which a part stands for the whole.
Syntax: the arrangement and grammatical relations of words in a sentence.
Theme: main idea of the story; its message(s).
Thesis: a proposition for consideration, especially one to be discussed and proved
or disproved; the main idea.
Tone: the devices used to create the mood and atmosphere of a literary work; the
author’s perceived point of view.
Tongue in Cheek: a type of humor in which the speaker feigns seriousness; a.k.a. “dry” or “dead pan”
Tragedy: in literature: any composition with a somber theme carried to a disastrous conclusion; a fatal event; protagonist usually is heroic but tragically (fatally) flawed
Understatement: opposite of hyperbole; saying less than you mean for emphasis
Vernacular: everyday speech
Voice: The textual features, such as diction and sentence structures, that convey a writer’s or speaker’s pesona.