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DIDLS

AP English Tone Analysis
by

Heather Speziale

on 8 October 2015

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Transcript of DIDLS

DIDLS
Analyzing TONE
What is TONE?

Tone is the writer's or speaker's attitude in regard
to the subject and the audience. Understanding tone
depends on the reader's appreciation (knowledge) of
word choice, details, imagery, and language.
To misinterpret
tone
is to misinterpret
meaning
.
If we miss irony or sarcasm, we will miss the meaning.
DICTION
The connotation of the word choice:
Connotation is the emotional associations one makes with a word. It is different from denotation, which is the dictionary/literal definition of a word.
Example: Read the following synonyms for the word “upset.” List them in order of most intense to least intense.

angry annoyed furious displeased pissed

1. __________________________________________ most intense
2. __________________________________________
3. __________________________________________
4. __________________________________________
5. __________________________________________ least intense
How does the impact of my sentence change if I say
“she was pissed,”
as opposed to
“she was displeased"
?

The more
specific
the word, the more
vivid of a picture
you get. This applies not only to our reading, but also to your writing.
IMAGERY
Vivid descriptions/literary devices that appeal to understanding through the senses.
To what sensory experience is each of the following images appealing? What literary devices appear? What is the tone?

1. “The air, tinged with chlorine, created a calm that rippled through the guests.”

2. “It took just one clumsy clod to bring it all to a screeching halt.”

3. “Her clothes spread wide and mermaid-like while they bore her up.”
After reading these three sentences together,
how would you characterize the tone as a whole? How does the imagery contribute to this?
DETAILS
Facts that are included or omitted
Details are most commonly the facts given by the author or speaker as support for the attitude or tone.
The speaker's perspective shapes what details are given.
Exercise: Watch the video and describe what you see…

1. to a friend who did not attend the wedding.

2. to a judge who is overseeing the lawsuit the bride filed against the best man.

How does your description change in each scenario? How important is diction (word choice) in conveying the details in each scenario?
LANGUAGE
The overall use of language, such as formal, clinical, slang, etc.

Like word choice, the
language
of a passage has control over
tone
. Language is the
entire body
of words used in a text, not just isolated bits of diction.
Example Tone Words:

patronizing (condescending) satiric (ridiculing) somber (gloomy)

Exercise
: Read the following YouTube comment and characterize the tone of it using one of the above tone words. What about the language of the passage informed your choice?

I really had no intentions of laughing but I just couldn't contain myself. What on earth was the best man thinking? His walking appeared as if he was detached from reality.
patronizing (condescending) satiric (ridiculing) somber (gloomy)
SYNTAX
How sentence structure focuses or distracts the reader’s attention.

How a speaker or author constructs a sentence affects what the audience understands.
Exercise:

Read the following sentence constructions and discuss how the focus of each sentence shifts.
1. The bride was pushed into the pool by the best man.
2. The best man pushed the bride into the pool.
DIDLS

Practice:

Using an excerpt from Fitzgerald's
The Great Gatsby
, complete a DIDLS analysis through both annotation and organizing your information on a DIDLS chart.
A Lovely Quote About Syntax
“This sentence has five words. Here are five more words. Five-word sentences are fine. But several together become monotonous. Listen to what is happening. The writing is getting boring. The sound of it drones. It’s like a stuck record. The ear demands some variety. Now listen. I vary the sentence length, and I create music. Music. The writing sings. It has a pleasant rhythm, a lilt, a harmony. I use short sentences. And I use sentences of medium length. And sometimes, when I am certain the reader is rested, I will engage him with a sentence of considerable length, a sentence that burns with energy and builds with all the impetus of a crescendo, the roll of the drums, the crash of the cymbals–sounds that say listen to this, it is important.”
“This sentence has five words. Here are five more words. Five-word sentences are fine. But several together become monotonous. Listen to what is happening. The writing is getting boring. The sound of it drones. It’s like a stuck record. The ear demands some variety.
Now listen.
I vary the sentence length, and I create music. Music. The writing sings. It has a pleasant rhythm, a lilt, a harmony. I use short sentences. And I use sentences of medium length. And sometimes, when I am certain the reader is rested, I will engage him with a sentence of considerable length, a sentence that burns with energy and builds with all the impetus of a crescendo, the roll of the drums, the crash of the cymbals–sounds that say listen to this, it is important.”
Gary Provost
using...
Full transcript