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 LITERARY DEVICES: PART IV

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PostSubject: LITERARY DEVICES: PART IV   Sat Jul 28, 2018 3:42 pm

RHYME SCHEME
The rhyme scheme is the practice of rhyming words placed at the end of the lines in the prose or poetry. Rhyme scheme refers to the order in which particular words rhyme. If the alternate words rhyme, it is an “a-b-a-b” rhyme scheme, which means “a” is the rhyme for the lines 1 and 3 and “b” is the rhyme affected in the lines 2 and 4.
Example:
Roses are red (a)
Violets are blue (b)
Beautiful they all may be (c)
But I love you (b)
The above is an “a-b-c-b” rhyme scheme.
 
RHYTHM & RHYME
The concept of ‘rhythm and rhyme’ refers to a pattern of rhymes that is created by using words that produce the same or similar sounds. Rhythm and rhyme together refer to the recurrence of similar sounds in prose and poetry, creating a musical, gentle effect.
Example:
“I am a teapot
Short and stout;
This is my handle
And this is my spout.
When the water’s boiling
Hear me shout;
Just lift me up
And pour me out”
 
SATIRE
The use of satire in literature refers to the practice of making fun of a human weakness or character flaw. The use of satire is often inclusive of a need or decision of correcting or bettering the character that is on the receiving end of the satire. In general, even though satire might be humorous and may “make fun”, its purpose is not to entertain and amuse but actually to derive a reaction of contempt from the reader. Example: An example of satire in modern pop culture is the TV series South Park that uses satire as it primary medium for drawing attention the flaws in society, especially American society at present. The scripts and writing for the show are an excellent example of satire in written form.
 
SETTING
In literature, the word ‘setting’ is used to identify and establish the time, place and mood of the events of the story. It basically helps in establishing where and when and under what circumstances the story is taking place. Example: In the first installment of the Harry Potter series, a large part of the book takes place at the protagonist, Harry’s, aunt’s and uncle’s place, living in the “muggle” (non-magical) world with the “muggle” folks, and Harry is unaware of his magical capabilities and blood. This setting establishes the background that Harry has a non-magical childhood with other “muggle” people and has no clue about his special powers or his parents and is raised much like, actually worse than, regular people, till his 11th birthday.
 
SIMILE
Similes are one of the most commonly used literary devices; referring to the practice of drawing parallels or comparisons between two unrelated and dissimilar things, people, beings, places and concepts. By using similes a greater degree of meaning and understanding is attached to an otherwise simple sentence. The reader is able to better understand the sentiment the author wishes to convey. Similes are marked by the use of the words ‘as’ or ‘such as’ or ‘like’. Example: He is like a mouse in front of the teacher.
 
SPOONERISM
Spoonerism refers to the practice of interchanging the first letters of some words in order to create new words or even to create nonsensical words in order to create a humorous setting. While they are often unintentional and known as a “slip of the tongue”, in literature they are welcomed as witty wordplay. Example: The phrase “flesh and blood” being spoken as a character as “blesh and flood” in urgency and heightened emotion.
 
STANZA
The term stanza refers to a single, related chunk of lines in poetry. It basically refers to one unit or group of lines, which forms one particular faction in poetry. The most basic kind of stanza is usually 4 lines per group, with the simplest rhyme scheme “a-b-a-b” being followed.
Example:
“The greedy paddy cat,
Chased after the mice;
She got so round and fat,
But it tasted so nice”
 
STREAM OF CONSCIOUSNESS
The phrase ‘stream of consciousness’ refers to an uninterrupted and unhindered collection and occurrence of thoughts and ideas in the conscious mind. In literature, the phrase refers to the flow of these thoughts; with reference to a particular character’s thinking process. This literary device is usually used in order to provide a narrative in the form of the character’s thoughts instead of using dialogue or description. Example: All writings by Virginia Woolff are a good example of literary stream of consciousness. "Life is not a series of gig lamps symmetrically arranged; life is a luminous halo, a semi-transparent envelope surrounding us from the beginning of consciousness to the end." The Common Reader (1925)
 
SUSPENSE
Suspense is the intense feeling that an audience goes through while waiting for the outcome of certain events. It basically leaves the reader holding their breath and wanting more information. The amount of intensity in a suspenseful moment is why it is hard to put a book down. Without suspense, a reader would lose interest quickly in any story because there is nothing that is making the reader ask, “What’s going to happen next?” In writing, there has to be a series of events that leads to a climax that captivates the audience and makes them tense and anxious to know what is going to happen.
Example:
A cliffhanger is a great way to create suspense. You remember when you were a kid and very excited to watch those Saturday morning shows. You can probably recall the feeling you had at the pit of your stomach when, after about 25 minutes and lots of commercials, you were hoping to find out what happened to your favorite character. However, you didn’t get to find out. Instead they would make the “Tune In Next Week” announcement and you already knew that you would be there. Same time, same place. Suspense is a powerful literary tool because, if done correctly, you know your audience will be back for more and more.
 
SYMBOL
A symbol is a literary device that contains several layers of meaning, often concealed at first sight, and is representative of several other aspects, concepts or traits than those that are visible in the literal translation alone. Symbol is using an object or action that means something more than its literal meaning. Example: The phrase “a new dawn” does not talk only about the actual beginning of a new day but also signifies a new start, a fresh chance to begin and the end of a previous tiring time.
 
SYNECDOCHE
A synecdoche is a literary device that uses a part of something to refer to the whole or vice versa. It is somewhat rhetorical in nature, where the entire object is represented by way of a fraction of it or a fraction of the object is symbolized by the whole. Example: “Weary feet in the walk of life”, does not refer to the feet actually being tired or painful; it is symbolic of a long, hard struggle through the journey of life and feeling low, tired, un optimistic and ‘the walk of life’ does not represent an actual path or distance covered, instead refers to the entire sequence of life events that has made the person tired.
 
SYNESTHESIA
While the term synesthesia literally refers to a medical condition wherein one or many of the sensory modalities become joined to one another, in literature it refers to the depiction of a strong connection, link or bond between the different senses. Characters in literature are sometimes described to be experiencing synesthesia. Synesthesia is the conflation of the senses. Example: The Sound of Blue by Hollu Payne which portrays synesthesia with respect to the Romantic ideal.
 
SYNTAX
Syntax in literature refers to the actual way in which words and sentences are placed together in the writing. Usually in the English language the syntax should follow a pattern of subject-verb-object agreement but sometimes authors play around with this to achieve a lyrical, rhythmic, rhetoric or questioning effect. It is not related to the act of choosing specific words or even the meaning of each word or the overall meanings conveyed by the sentences. Example: The sentence "The man drives the car" would follow normal syntax in the English language. By changing the syntax to "The car drives the man", the sentence becomes awkward.
 
THEME
The theme of any literary work is the base that acts as a foundation for the entire literary piece. The theme links all aspects of the literary work with one another and is basically the main subject. The theme can be an enduring pattern or motif throughout the literary work, occurring in a complex, long winding manner or it can be short and succinct and provide a certain insight into the story. Example: The main theme in the play Romeo and Juliet was love with smaller themes of sacrifice, tragedy, struggle, hardship, devotion and so on.
 
TONE
The tone of a literary work is the perspective or attitude that the author adopts with regards to a specific character, place or development. Tone can portray a variety of emotions ranging from solemn, grave, and critical to witty, wry and humorous. Tone helps the reader ascertain the writer’s feelings towards a particular topic and this in turn influences the reader’s understanding of the story. Example: In her Harry Potter series, author J.K. Rowling has taken an extremely positive, inspiring and uplifting tone towards the idea of love and devotion.
 
TRAGEDY
In literature, the concept of tragedy refer to a series of unfortunate events by which one or more of the literary characters in the story undergo several misfortunes, which finally culminate into a disaster of ‘epic proportions’. Tragedy is generally built up in 5 stages: a) happy times b) the introduction of a problem c) the problem worsens to a crisis or dilemma d) the characters are unable to prevent the problem from taking over e) the problem results in some catastrophic, grave ending, in which the tragedy is culminated. Example: In the play Julius Caesar, the lead character is an ambitious, fearless and power-hungry king who ignores all the signs and does not heed the advice of the well-meaning: finally being stabbed to death by his own best friend and adviser Brutus. This moment has been immortalized by the phrase “Et tu Brute?”, wherein Caesar realizes that he has finally been defeated, and that too through betrayal.
 
UNDERSTATEMENT
This literary device refers to the practice of drawing attention to a fact that is already obvious and noticeable. Understating a fact is usually done by way of sarcasm, irony, wryness or any other form of dry humor. Understating something is akin to exaggerating its obviousness as a means of humor. Example: The phrase, “Oh! I wonder if he could get any later; I am free all day long”. Said in a sarcastic tone it indicates that the speaker obviously means the opposite of the literal meaning.
 
VERISIMILITUDE
Verisimilitude tends to be based around the appearance or proximity to being real, or the truth. It was a large part of the work of Karl Popper, and can be used in a variety of different ways to describe something, as well. It is a way of implying the believability or likelihood of a theory or narrative. However, just because something can be described as having Verisimilitude does not mean that it is true, only that merely appears to or seems to be true.

Example:
It can be used in a variety of ways, for example;
“While some dislike the content of the novel due to its graphic nature, you cannot deny that the content certainly gives the book some Verisimilitude” An example of Verisimilitude in concept, though, could be a doubtful statement in a court of law or even a false testimonial for a restaurant. If something “seems” like it’s all well and good, but you can’t quite decide, then it can be said to have Verisimilitude.
 
VERSE
The literary term ‘verse’ is used to refer to any single, lone line of a poetry composition. A metrical writing line is known as verse. The word can however, also refer to a stanza or any other part of the poetry. Example: A single line or stanza in a poem would be an example of verse.
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