AP Lit Terms - Dialogue

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17 Terms
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Aside

A brief speech in which a character turns from the person being addressed to speak directly to the audience; a dramatic device for letting the audience know what a character is really thinking or feeling as opposed to what the character pretends to think or feel.

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Colloquial

Informal, conversational language.

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Dialogue

Conversation between characters in a drama or narrative. (2) A literary work written in the form of a conversation.

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Dialect

A regional variety of a language distinguished by pronunciation, grammar, or vocabulary.

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Diction

Word choice.

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Epithet

A descriptive literary device that describes a place, a thing, or a person in such a way that it helps in making its characteristics more prominent than they actually are. Also, it is known as a nickname, “by-name,” or “descriptive title.”

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Euphemism

Substituting a mild, indirect, or vague term for a harsh, blunt, or offensive one.

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Figure of Speech:

Broadly, any way of saying something other than the ordinary way; more narrowly (and for the purposes of this class) a way of saying one thing and meaning another.

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Hyperbole

A figure of speech in which exaggeration is used in the service of truth.

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Invective

Denunciatory or abusive language.

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Monologue

(1) A dramatic soliloquy. (2) A literary composition in such form.

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Proverb

A short, pithy saying that expresses a basic truth or practical precept.

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Pun

A play on words, sometimes on different senses of the same word and sometimes on the similar sense or sound of different words.

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Sarcasm

Bitter or cutting speech; speech intended by its speaker to give pain to the person addressed.

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Soliloquy

A device often used in drama whereby a character relates or works through his or her thoughts and feelings to him/herself and to the audience without addressing any of the other characters. Typically the speaker is alone on stage and the audience assumes that the speaker is telling the truth.

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Slang

A kind of language esp. occurring in casual or playful speech, usu. made up of short-lived coinages and figures of speech deliberately used in place of standard terms.

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Understatement

A figure of speech that consists of saying less than one means, or of saying what one means with less force than the occasion warrants.

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