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Transcript of Literary Techniques
Challenges ESL Learners Face
with the Imperative
Positive and negative imperatives
What is Allusion?
Definition: A device in which virtue is ultimately rewarded or vice punished, often by an ironic twist of fate intimately related to the character’s own conduct.
Definition: “It is a literary term where the authors uses human traits and characteristics with inanimate objects, phenomena and animals.”
What is a theme?
A common thread or repeated idea that is incorporated throughout a literary work.
“True love conquers all” is the main theme of Sleeping Beauty.
What is symbolism?
An object, character, figure, or color that is used to represent an abstract idea or concept
Dumbo’s “magic” feather represents courage and self-confidence. Once he truly believes in himself, he no longer needs it as a psychological crutch.
Irony that occurs when the meaning of the situation is understood by the audience but not by the characters in the literary work.
Throughout most of The Lion King, Simba mopes around feeling guilty for his father’s death, unaware (as the audience is) that Scar actually killed Mufasa.
A constantly recurring symbol or motif in literature, painting, or mythology.
Alice must pass a series of tests as she makes her way through Wonderland. This kind of journey is a common archetype in Western literature and is best epitomized by Homer’s The Odyssey.
A character who illuminates the qualities of another character by means of contrast.
Gaston’s combination of good looks and terrible personality emphasizes Beast’s tragic situation. The former is a monster trapped inside a man; the latter a man trapped inside a monster.
A brief reference in a literary work to a person, place, thing, or passage in another literary work, usually for the purpose of associating the tone or theme of the one work with the other.
In The Hunchback of Notre Dame, the gargoyle Laverne tells a flock of pigeons to “Fly my pretties! Fly, Fly!” à la the Wicked Witch of the West in The Wizard of Oz.
What is foreshadowing?
A warning or indication of a future event.
Before she’s fatally shot by a hunter (and millions of childhoods are scarred), Bambi’s mother gives Bambi a stern lecture on the dangers of man.
What is mood?
The atmosphere that pervades a literary work with the intention of evoking a certain emotion or feeling from the audience.
Fantasia frequently uses music and setting to drastically shift the mood from light and playful to dark and foreboding.
What is dramatic irony?
What is an archetype?
What is a foil?
What is breaking the fourth wall?
Breaking the Fourth Wall
Speaking directly to or acknowledging the audience. The "fourth wall" refers to the imaginary "wall" at the front of the stage in a traditional three-walled box set in a proscenium theater.
Timon acknowledges the audience when he cuts off Pumbaa midsong: “Pumbaa, not in front of the kids!”
The portion of a story that introduces important background information to the audience — for example, information about the setting, events occurring before the main plot, characters’ backstories, etc.
At the beginning of Robin Hood, the rooster Alan-a-Dale describes how Robin Hood has been robbing from the rich to give to Nottingham’s poor.
What is exposition?
What is conflict?
An inherent incompatibility between the objectives of two or more characters or forces.
When Shere Khan the man-eating tiger returns to the jungle, Mowgli must flee to the safety of human civilization.
What is climax?
What is anagnorisis?
What is poetic justice?
The turning point in the action (also known as the “crisis”) and/or the highest point of interest or excitement.
Pinocchio is transformed into a donkey and sold into labor before he saves Geppetto and proves himself worthy of being a real boy.
The recognition or discovery by the protagonist of the identity of some character or the nature of his own predicament, which leads to the resolution of the plot.
Arthur, thinking he’s just a lowly squire, has no idea he’s the rightful heir to the throne until he pulls the sword from the stone.
Jafar is so power hungry he fails to realize that becoming a genie will cost him his freedom.
It allows the author to use contradictory, contrasting concepts placed together in a manner that actually ends up making sense in a strange, and slightly complex manner
By Ms. Marcelin
The character’s thoughts, dialogue and feelings; as well as, the other characters’ thoughts, dialogue and feelings towards them.
The character’s actions and reactions throughout the story.
"Flashbacks are interruptions that writers do to insert past events in order to provide background or context to the current events of a narrative."
The author uses specific words and phrases that exaggerate and overemphasize the statement in order to produce a grander, more noticeable effect.” It is the opposite of understatement.
Words or phrases usually involve and appeal to the reader’s 5 senses (Touch, Smell, Taste, Hear and Sight).
Makes stories more dramatic and interesting
It conveys a certain mood
The reader relates more to the object being personified
It is human nature to relate to something with human aspect
Why use personification?
What is connotation?