Literary Analytics

Anagnorisis
The moment of recognition


Analytic plot
A plot in which the main actions or events have happened before the narrative sets in, and in which the reader’s interest is mainly directed at finding out what has happened, rather than at what will happen


Antagonist
Main character who reacts to the protagonist


Anti-hero/ine
Main character without exceptional qualities


Conflict
A situation in which one or more characters have mutually exclusive goals.


Dramatic irony
The effect of a contrast between what is expected and what happens, or between what characters know and what the reader knows.


Ending
Closure or completion of a story


Epiphany
Moment of sudden insight or understanding


First-person narrator
Storyteller who refers to him/herself with first-person pronouns “I”, “me”, “my”


Flashback
Jump to an earlier fictional present


Hero
Protagonist or antagonist with exceptional qualities
Hero/ine (the opposite is the Villain)


Heroine
Female protagonist or antagonist with exceptional qualities


Identification
Response to a piece of fiction by a reader who imagines him/herself in the role of a character while reading


Internal conflict
Situation in which one character has mutually exclusive goals


Mystery
Appeal to the reader’s curiosity


Omniscient narrator
‘All-knowing’ narrator


Open ending
Ending without a sense of closure or completion


Peripety
Turnaround or reversal


Plot
Sequence of actions or events linked to each other as cause and effect


Point-of-view
Use of different perspectives in third-person narration


Prose
Non-metrical language


Protagonist
Main character whose actions move the plot forward
Protagonist (the opposite is the Antagonist)


Suspense
Delay in satisfying the reader’s curiosity


Synthetic plot
Plot in which the reader’s interest is directed at finding out what will happen


Third-person narrator
Storyteller who reports the events of a story without talking about him/herself.


Twist
A surprise turn at the end of a story.


Unreliable narrator
A first-person narrator whose statements cannot be trusted.


Verbal irony
A way of making a statement by saying the exact opposite.


Villain
A character who is and does evil.

No Rhyme, No Reason

Speaker
voice/character who speaks; also known as the narator


Addressee
character who is spoken to/who listens


Statement
what the speaker says to the addressee


Rhythm
effect created through regular distribution of stressed and unstressed syllables


Caesura
pause or break in the middle of a line


End-stopped line
line that completes a syntactic unit, mostly ending with a punctuation


Run-on line
line that contains part of a syntactic unit, to be completed in the following


Rhyme
identity of sound from the last stressed vowel, to the end of words or phrases


Alliteration
identity of sound at the beginning of words


Assonance
identity of sound in the middle of words


Symbol
something that stands for or points to something else


Metaphor
way of speaking about something as if it were something else


Metonymy
indirect way of referring to something by naming something else closely related to it, e.g. as container and content, or genus and species


Sonnet
fourteen-line poem in rhymed iambic pentameter


Onomatopoeia
similarity between sound and meaning


Motif
element that occurs in many different texts


Simile
explicit comparison


Hyperbole
poetic exaggeration


Personification
a way of talking about something non-human as if it were a person; also known as prosopopoeia

Literacy, Literally

Genre = a type or kind of literature.

Fiction = narrative prose literature.
Poetry = metrical literature.
Drama = representational literature.


Fiction

Short story = written to be read at a single sitting.
Novella = written to be read in several sittings.
Novel = written to be read in multiple sittings.


Poetry

Lyric poetry =  expresses thoughts or feelings.
Narrative poetry = the narrator is a storyteller.
Dramatic poetry = the narrator interacts with others.


Drama

Comedy = from disorder to order, ends happily.
Tragedy = from order to disorder, ending badly.
Tragicomedy = mixes tragedy and comedy.


LITERATURE
lit-er-a-ture | [noun]
∎ Written works, especially those considered of superior or lasting artistic merit.
2.
∎ Books and writings published on a particular subject.
3.
∎ Leaflets and other printed matter used to advertise products or give advice.



LITERARY
lit-er-ar-y | [adjective]
∎ Concerning the writing, study, or content of literature, especially of the kind valued for quality of form.
∎∎ “Orwell’s are among the great literary works of the twentienth century”



LITERAL
lit-er-al | [adjective]
∎ Taking words in their usual or most basic sense without metaphor or exaggeration.
2.
∎ (of a translation) representing the exact words of the original text.
∎∎ “A literal translation from the Arabic”
∎∎∎ synonyms: word-for-word, verbatim, line-for-line, letter-for-letter
3.
∎ (of a person or performance) lacking imagination; prosaic.
∎∎ “his interpretation was rather too literal”
∎∎∎ synonyms: literal-minded, factual
∎∎∎∎ antonyms: whimsical


 

Poetic Modus Operandi

Some modes or types of poetic style… the full list is indefinite.

Argumentative mode
Speaker expresses an opinion or disagrees with another one


Confessional mode
Speaker expresses private or secret thoughts or emotions


Descriptive mode
Speaker details a scene, usually in the present tense


Dialogic mode
Two or more voices take turns in speaking


Didactic mode
Speaker informs or advises the addressee or addressees


Discursive mode
Speaker discusses a topic in the manner of an essay


Dramatic mode
Speaker interacts with others in a well-defined situation


Elegiac mode
Speaker regrets the loss of something or someone


Eulogic mode
Speaker praises something or someone


Expository mode
Speaker illustrates or explains something


Lyric mode
Speaker expresses thoughts or emotions


Narrative mode
Speaker tells a story, usually in the past tense


Persuasive mode
Speaker tries to convince the addressee or addressees


Polemic mode
Speaker criticises something or someone explicitly


Satiric mode
Speaker criticises something or someone implicitly

Flashback

Literary Terminology:

FLASHBACK
flash-back | [noun]
∎ A scene in a film, novel, etc. set in a time earlier than the main story.
∎ “In a series of flashbacks, we follow the pair through their teenage years”

 

Flashback is a literary device wherein the author depicts the occurrence of specific events to the reader, which have taken place before the present time the narration is following, or events that have happened before the events that are currently unfolding in the story.

Flashback devices that are commonly used are past narratives by characters, depictions and references of dreams and memories and a sub device known as authorial sovereignty wherein the author directly chooses to refer to a past occurrence by bringing it up in a straightforward manner.

Flashback is used to create a background to the present situation, place or person.

Foreshadowing

Literary Terminology:

FORESHADOW
fore-shad-ow | [verb]
∎ Be a warning or indication of (a future event).
∎ “Other new measures are foreshadowed in the draft script.”

Synonyms:
augur, presage, portend, foretell, indicate, suggest, signal, herald, forewarn, anticipate.

 

Foreshadowing is an advance sign or warning of what is to come in the future. The author of a mystery novel might use foreshadowing in an early chapter of her book to give readers an inkling of an impending murder.

WForeshadowing is used as a literary device to tease readers about plot turns that will occur later in the story. hen you want to let people know about an event that is yet to occur, you can use foreshadowing.

A fortune teller might use foreshadowing, warning that a short life line is a sign of some impending disaster.

Imagary

Literary Terminology:

IMAGERY
im-age-ry | [noun]
∎ Visually descriptive or figurative language, especially in a literary work.
∎ “The poet Tennyson uses imagery to create a lyrical emotion”
∎ “The film’s nostalgic imagery was very powerful”

 

In literature, one of the strongest devices is imagery wherein the author uses words and phrases to create “mental images” for the reader. Imagery helps the reader to visualize more realistically the author’s writings.

The usage of metaphors, allusions, descriptive words and similes amongst other literary forms in order to “tickle” and awaken the readers’ sensory perceptions is referred to as imagery.