Literary elements Class Notes


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Literary elements Class Notes

  1. 1. Literary ElementsA literary element (or element of literature) is an individual aspect or characteristic of a whole work of literature.
  2. 2. Alliteration• The repetition of initial consonant sounds in words. • Example: Sally sells sea shells by the sea shore.Allusion• A brief, usually indirect reference to a person, place, or event--real or fictional • Example: Chapter 1, page 1 of The Outsiders when Ponyboy references the actor Paul Newman.
  3. 3. Assonance • The repetition of vowel sounds in the first syllable of words, though they may not rhyme • Example: (peach, tree) Consonance• The repetition of consonant sounds in the first syllable of words, though they may not rhyme. • Example: (fast, lost)
  4. 4. Hyperbole• An exaggeration or overstatement. • Example: “I’ve told you a million times”Idiom• An expression of two or more words, which mean something other than the literal meanings of the individual words. • Example: bull in a china shop, bite off more than you can chew
  5. 5. Imagery• Words or phrases that appeal to one or more of the five senses (sight, touch, taste, hearing, smell) and help to create a vivid description for the reader. • Example: Visual - The sun was shining on the sea, Shining with all his might: He did his very best to make The billows smooth and bright - And this was odd, because it was The middle of the night. (Lewis Carroll)Metaphor• A comparison between two seemingly unlike things without using the words “like”, “as”, “than”, or “resembles.” • Example: America is a melting pot, Her home was a prison
  6. 6. Onomatopoeia• Words or phrases that sound like the things they are describing. • Example: (hiss, zoom, bow-wow)Personification• Giving human qualities or characteristics to non-human objects • Example: The flowers begged for water, Lightning danced across the sky.
  7. 7. Repetition• Repetition occurs when a word or phrase used more than once. Repetition can create a pattern. • Example: "What lies behind us and what lies before us are tiny compared to what lies within us.” - Ralph Waldo EmersonRhyme• Repetition of the same or similar sounds at the end of words or lines • Example: Hickory, dickory, dock. The mouse ran up the clock.
The clock struck one,
And down he run,
Hickory, dickory, dock.
  8. 8. Rhythm• The arrangement of stressed and unstressed syllables into a pattern. • Example: The rhythm pattern in a Limerick Poem 1. There was an old man from Peru, (A) da DUM da da DUM da da DUM (3 DUMS)  Rhythm 2. who dreamed he was eating his shoe. (A) da DUM da da DUM da da DUM (3 DUMS)  Rhythm 3. He awoke in the night (B) da DUM da da DUM (2 DUMS)  Rhythm 4. with a terrible fright, (B) da da DUM da da DUM (2 DUMS)  Rhythm 5. and found out that it was quite true. (A) da DUM da da DUM da da DUM (3 DUMS)  Rhythm
  9. 9. Ms Moran’s LimerickThere once was a kid in the classwho tried to give Ms Moran sass.She spoke with a frown,And sent him right down,To the office where his detention would pass.
  10. 10. Simile• A comparison of one thing to another, using the words "like," "as," or "as though.” • Example: • Shrek: Ogres are like onions.
Donkey: They stink?
Shrek: Yes. No!
Donkey: They make you cry?
Shrek: No!
Donkey: You leave them out in the sun, they get all brown, start sprouting little white hairs.
Shrek: No! Layers! Onions have layers!
(Shrek, 2001) Stanza• An arrangement of a certain number of lines, usually four or more, sometimes having a fixed length, meter, or rhyme scheme, forming a division of a poem