Analyzing Style in Literature Essay

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Analyzing Style in Literature

The style of a piece is a function of the writer’s craft or the techniques used by the writer to communicate his ideas. To discuss the style of work of literature, consider the diction (vocabulary choices), the syntax (sentence construction) and the tone (author’s attitude toward the subject and the reader).

A. DICTION: When analyzing diction, consider the following: ============================================================

- figurative language (use of simile, metaphor, personification, hyperbole, allusion, irony, metonymy, symbolism)

- abstract or concrete words

- denotative or connotative words

- monosyllabic or polysyllabic words

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Eg. The murmuring of the innumerable bees, or words such as bark, snap and squeak.

Alliteration – repetition of first letters or consonant sounds. E.g. ghostly galleons, long languid ladies, five meandering miles.

Euphony – certain words are combines to give a pleasing effect. Eg. And moveless fish in the water gleam, cool blue umbrellas

Cacophony – harsh sounding words. Eg. Stark black crabs scrape barnacles.

Archaic – words no longer used, or words used with a meaning that is no longer accepted. Eg. Thou dost, methought

Colloquial – conversational, informal, comfortable, everyday ways of saying something

Eg. Formal: I have a great appetite. Colloquial: I’m hungry.

Formal - I am very pleased to make your acquaintance. Colloquial: Glad to meet you.

Abstract – words which have no tangible referent; that is, which refer to things which cannot