Paul, Josh, And Ashley's: English Rhetorical Terms
Rhetorical Vocabulary By Paul, Josh, and Ashley
Abstract• Refers to language that describes concepts rather than concrete images ( ideas and qualities rather than observable or speciﬁc things, people, or places). The observable or “physical” is usually described in concrete language.• Example:William Shakespeares "To be or not to be: that is thequestion"
Allegory• An extended narrative in prose or verse in which characters, events, and settings represent abstract qualities and in which the writer intends a second meaning to be read beneath the surface of the story; the underlying meaning may be moral, religious, political, social, or satiric.• Example: One well-known example of an allegory is Dante’s The Divine Comedy. In Inferno, Dante is on a pilgrimage to try to understand his own life, but his character also represents every man who is in search of his purpose in the world (Merriam Webster Encyclopedia of Literature). Although Virgil literally guides Dante on his journey through the mystical inferno, he can also be seen as the reason and human wisdom that Dante has been looking for in his life. Student, University of North Carolina at Pembroke, Machella Caldwell. "Glossary of Literary Terms." The University of North Carolina at Pembroke. Web. 22 Sept. 2011. <http://www.uncp.edu/home/canada/work/allam/general/glossary.htm>.
Anecdote• A short, simple narrative of an incident; often used for humorous effect or to make a point.• Example: A man in charge of a road clean up crew got a ticket for littering after some trash blew out of the back of his truck on a trash run.
Annotation• Explanatory notes added to a text to explain, cite sources, or give bibliographical data.• Example: Schuyler, Henderson W. "Literature Annotations." Whats New. Dover Thrift Editions, 2 Aug. 2005. Web. 22 Sept. 2011. <http://litmed.med.nyu.edu/Annotation? action=view>.
Antithesis• The presentation of two contrasting images. The ideas are balanced by word, phrase, clause, or paragraphs.• Example: “To be or not to be...” “Ask not what your country can do for you, ask what you can do for your country....”
Aphorism• A short, often witty statement of a principle or a truth about life• Example: “Early bird gets the worm.” “It’s easier to give up than to sit up.”
Apostrophe• Usually in poetry but sometimes in prose; the device of calling out to an imaginary, dead, or absent person or to a place, thing, or personiﬁed abstraction.• Example: Example of Apostrophe Literary Term The Sun Rising by John Donne Busy old fool, unruly sun, Why dost thou thus, Through windows, and through curtains call on us? "Apostrophe Literary Term." Types Of Poetry. Web. 21 Sept. 2011. <http://www.types-of-poetry.org.uk/49-apostrophe-literary-term.htm>.
Argumentation• Writing that attempts to prove the validity of a point of view or an idea by presenting reasoned arguments; persuasive writing is a form of argumentation.• Example: We should not read about dystopian societies because it gets people thinking in the wrong state of mind. It gets people down when they can relate to the writing, when that is usually what you want to do...
Cacophony; Dissonance• Harsh, awkward, or dissonant sounds used deliberately in poetry or prose; the opposite of euphony.• Example: Example of Cacophony - Excerpt Jabberwocky by Lewis Carroll Twas brillig, and the slithy toves Did gyre and gimble in the wabe; All mimsy were the borogoves, And the mome raths outgrabe. "Types Of Poetry Cacophony." Types Of Poetry. Web. 21 Sept. 2011. <http://www.types-of-poetry.org.uk/09-cacophony.htm>.
Caricature• Descriptive writing that greatly exaggerates a speciﬁc feature of a person’s appearance or a facet of personality.• Example: Silva is so bald that when the light hits his head it reﬂects right off just like a mirror and can burn a person’s corneas in just one little ﬂash. (I use it to make toast, Mmmmmm ﬁnger licken good.) His ears are big enough to ﬂy with. I’m so hungry I could eat four cows, three horses, six pigs, and a dragon.