American Literature Fall Semester Study Guide

Topics: Ethan Frome, Edith Wharton Pages: 29 (10874 words) Published: March 6, 2013
Literary Ideas
Elements of Native American literature: “World on Turtle’s Back,” “Song of the Sky Loom,” “Hunting Song,” and “The Man to Send Rain Clouds” * Native American Traditions
* Harmony with nature
-Kinship with animals, plants, land, heavenly bodies; all elements seen as live and aware * Story Telling and Performances
-Song, dance, and chants
* Complex Religious Beliefs
-Rituals, Ceremonies
* Oral Literature
* Myth
A Myth is a legendary or traditional story, usually concerning a superhuman being and dealing with events that have no natural explanation. A myth may also be an unproved belief that is accepted uncritically or an invented idea or story. It usually attempts to explain a phenomenon or strange occurrence without regard to fact of common sense and appeals to the emotions rather than reason. A myth is less historical than a legend and usually persists through oral transmission, as do legends and fables. * Creation Myth

Elements of Trickster Tales in “Coyote and the Buffalo,” “Fox and Coyote and Whale” * Folk Tales
* stories handed down, usually by word-of-mouth, from generation to generation. * Trickster Tales
* Folk Tales that feature animal or human character who engages in deceit, violence, and magic * Character often has contradictory qualities; moral yet immoral, foolish yet clever, greedy and helpful * Mythic- explaining features of the world

Elements of Historical Narratives: “La Relacion,” “Of Plymouth Plantation,” “Olaudah Equiano” * Plymouth Plantations
* Primary Sources
* Secondary Sources
* Audience
Elements of a Narrative:
* Plot
A plot is a plan or scheme to accomplish a purpose. In literature, this is the arrangement of events to achieve an intended effect consisting of a series of carefully devised and interrelated actions that progress through a struggle of opposing forces, called conflict, to a climax and a denouement. * Character

A character is an aggregate of traits and features that form the nature of some person or animal. It also refers to moral qualities and ethical standards and principles. In literature, character refers to a person represented in a story, novel, play, etc. * Setting

* Conflict
* Resolution
* Symbol
* Frame in Ethan Frome
Elements of Persuasion: “Declaration of Independence,” Patrick Henry’s Speech, “Lecture to a Missionary,” “Stride Toward Freedom,” and Interview with Malcom X * Rhetoric
The art of communicating ideas
* Persuasive Rhetoric
Reasoned arguments in favor or against particular beliefs or courses of action * Logical Appeals
Provide rational arguments to support writer’s claims
* Deductively
* To deduce something, to think of an idea
* Premise/generalization
* Analysis to support examples.
* Inductively
* The generalization after deduction
* Synthesis
* Emotional Appeals
* Appeals to emotion
* Based on specific examples: suffering/potential death * Rich in connotations and vivid images
* Ethical Appeals
* Based on shared moral values
* Calls forth Audience’s sense of right, justice, and virtue * Elevated Language
* Rhetorical Questions
* Questions that do not require answers
* Show their arguments to make answers seem obvious
* Repetition
* Repeating a point to tell the audience the topic is especially important * Parallelism: a form of repetition
Various Literary Terms/Vocabulary
The original model or pattern from which copies are made of from which something develops. It is also a symbol, theme, setting, or character that is thought to have some universal meaning and recurs in different times and places in myth, literature, folklore, dreams, and rituals. Parallelism

Parallelisms are an arrangement of the parts of a composition so that elements of equal importance are balanced in similar...
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