Literary Terms: A Dictionary
For all those who have become entangled in the ever-burgeoning sphere of confusing literary terminology, Professors Karl Beckson and Arthur Ganz provide clear and entertaining explanations, in this, their now-classic reference work. From abecedarius to zeugma, they gracefully guide the reader through the intricacies of literary forms and ideas. Over the years, Literary Terms has been revised and enlarged as Professors Beckson and Ganz have added new entries from recent literary theory and scholarship, bringing the total number of entries to over 900. It is an indispensable asset for understanding such concepts as deconstruction, Russian Formalism, feminist criticism, psychoanalytic criticism, semiotics, and the surfeit of others that have emerged in the ongoing process of interpreting literature.
Throughout the text, numerous helpful examples drawn from a multitude of sources—nursery rhymes to Shakespeare—clarify the concepts discussed. In addition, not only the terminology itself but also the historical and philosophical background necessary to a fuller understanding of any work is examined. The result is a readable dictionary that illuminates as much as it delights, providing essential information for the student as well as the professional.
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acatalectic accent achieve action aesthetic anapest ancient artistic ballad called character Classical comedy comic conventions couplet critics D. H. Lawrence designed developed device drama eighteenth century elements Elizabethan emotion England English epic essay example expression fiction figure French genre Greek Hamlet hero historical humor iambic idea images imitation irony John language Latin lines linguistics literary literature lyric M. H. Abrams meaning medieval metaphor Metaphysical Poets meter metrical metrical feet modern moral morality play movement myth narrative nature nineteenth century novel Oscar Wilde Parnassianism pastoral play plot poem poetic poetry poets popular prose quatrain reader reader-response criticism realistic refers Renaissance rhetorical rhythm Romantic Russian Formalism satire scene Shakespeare's short social sometimes song sonnet speech Spenserian sonnets sprung rhythm stanza story stress structure style syllables symbolic T. S. Eliot term theater theory traditional tragedy trochee unstressed usually verse Victorian villanelle word writers