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Literary Terms: Personal Narrative

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Erica Czernicki

on 11 September 2014

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Transcript of Literary Terms: Personal Narrative

Literary Terms: Personal Narrative
When we write pieces of literature, meaning is implied in both direct and indirect ways. Knowing the literary devices, or literary terms, gives the reader the vocabulary to discuss the text.

In narratives, poems, novels, and other genres of literature, sometimes
something is said is as important as
is said.

themes are universal statements about life for people in general, and not just the characters of a literary work.

Example: The loss of a loved one presents people with the challenge of redefining themselves.
Point of View
is the type of narration that an author uses to let the readers “hear” and “see” what takes place in a story, poem, essay etc. (first person, second person, third person)

Personal narratives are almost always written in first person point of view.

First person
: “
felt like
was getting drowned with shame and disgrace.”
Second person
: “Sometimes
cannot clearly discern between anger and frustration.”
Third person point of view
: “Mr. Stewart is a principled man.
acts by the book and never lets students deceive

is the writer’s choice of words. Diction includes both vocabulary (individual words) and syntax (the order and arrangement of words). If you choose to analyze diction, you need to determine the underlying reason for particular word choices.

Example: “The Plutibs lived in a cold, metal shack that shoved itself into the neighborhood.”
Negative diction, particularly diction connoting poverty, is used to discuss the family’s house.

“word pictures” to help evoke an emotional response. Writers use sensory details to appeal to one or more of our five senses: sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell. If choosing imagery, you need to identify the specific words that create the sensory effect.

“On a starry winter night in Portugal / Where the ocean kissed the southern shore / There a dream I never thought would come to pass / Came and went like time spent through an hourglass.” Teena Marie
Figurative Language
includes figures of speech to create word images
an exaggeration to express strong emotion, make a point or evoke humor

Example: He was working harder than any man had ever worked in his life.
a comparison between two dissimilar things using specific words of comparison
such as
like, as, than, resembles

Example: He runs like the wind.
a comparison between two dissimilar things

Example: The classroom was a madhouse.
a thing, an idea, or an animal is given human qualities. The non-human objects are portrayed in such a way that we feel they have the ability to act like human beings.

The sky weeps.
The leaves dance down the road.

interruptions writers use to insert past events in order to provide background or context to the current events of a narrative. By using flashbacks, writers allow their readers to learn more about a character’s motivation or a story’s conflict. Dream sequences and memories are methods used to present flashbacks.
a scene that interrupts and takes the narrative forward in time from the current time in a story. Generally, a flash-forward represents expected or imagined events in the future interjected in the main plot revealing the important parts of the story that are yet to occur.
1. Determine the theme of the Subaru commercial listed under "Flash-Forward" and use textual evidence to explain your theme.

2. Explain your worst day of the summer without using the word "worst." (See diction/imagery/hyperbole/simile/metaphor.)

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