Literacy Terms

Topics: All the King's Men, Fiction, Novel Pages: 14 (3281 words) Published: April 28, 2013

An allusion is a figure of speech that makes a reference to, or a representation of, people, places, events, literary work, myths, or works of art, either directly or by implication. A brief reference, explicit or indirect, to a person, place or event, or to another literary work or passage

Function The function of allusion depends as well on the author's intent; a reader may search out parallels to a figure of speech or a passage.

Example: In act one of Death of a Salesman Adonis who is a character in greek mythology is mentioned. Adonis the the god of beauty and desire. Something all the Lomans are seeking. Adonis alludes to the wants of the Lomans


The principal character in opposition to the protagonist or hero of a narrative or drama that may interfere with or inhibit the physiological action of another.

Example: Bless Me Ultima Tenorio Trementina, the father of the Trementina sisters.

Function: Tenorio Trementina is a key part to the novel Bless me, Ultima because of his role as the antagonist. The function of an antagonist is to provide a source of conflict, which Tenorio accomplishes by his malicious behavior and by calling Ultima a witch. This inflicts damage in Antonio’s innocent mind by introducing new ideas and providing obstacles for Antonio to overcome.

Word that is replaced by a pronoun.

Example: “It’s coming.” Pg. 13, line 13, All the King’s Men. Function:
The function of an antecedent is to act as an attention grabber. Since the significance of “it” is not stated, it leaves a desire to read further to discover the author’s meaning for the replacement word. The substitution creates a sense of anticipation and the mystery of the antecedent forms a more vivid image.

Apostrophe is a figure of speech in which someone absent or dead orsomething nonhuman is addressed as if it were alive and able to reply. Example: Lines 12-22, To Autumn by John Keats.

Function: The use of apostrophe in this poem is much like the personification that he uses in describing autumn. By addressing the season as if it had the ability to respond, Keats’ genuine love and appreciation for autumn is portrayed. The use of this literary term is significant because the figure of speech directed to autumn, although it cannot respond, intimately conveys his emotions towards autumn by addressing autumn as if it is alive and present.


A character is a person in a narrative work of arts. The aggregate of features and traits that form the individual nature of some person or thing.

Function: Characters are used to project an authors thoughts and actions to portray and deliver a message to his audience. Characters usually have human like characteristics to relate to the audience. But other objects and things can be used as characters in a work of literature.

Example: Antonio in Bless me Ulitima is a prime example of a character because Antonio is used as a vehicle to carry the story and plot along. He is the main focus of the entire book. All of the other characters project there actions to Antonio to move the story along.


The climax or turning point of a narrative work is its point of highest tension or drama or when the action starts in which the solution is given.

Function: The Climax is the justification of everything that has accrued before the climax. It is the focal point of a story or poem. Everything in the book is used to add to the importance of the climax. It is the essential point of tension and action that defines the book.

Example: In The Death of a Salesman the climax accrues when Linda Loman discovers the gas line hose and realizes that her husband Willy, has been trying to kill himself not only with the gas hose, but with his car as well. It is the point when false claims of good fortune are...
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