Literary Terms and Concepts to Define

Define each of the 11 terms listed below. These definitions must be in your own words; if you use any outside sources, it must be paraphrased, not quoted, and all such sources must be cited using APA citation practices.   Additionally, each definition must also identify and explain an example of the term found in one or more of the reading assignments for Week One.

Allusion – An allusion is an indirect reference to literature or art (, 2010). An example from The Hack Driver by Sinclair Lewis: The express man will probably get to Heaven’s gate and call St Peter “Pete” (LaRocco & Coughlin, 1996, p. 59).

Connotation – A connotation occurs when you suggest certain meanings as well as the explicit or primary meaning: An implied meaning of a word. The word “hearth” often connotes hospitality, warmth, comfort, etc. (, 2010). An example from To Be of Use, by Marge Piercy: Good workers are referred to as becoming natives to the elements of their work environment (LaRocco & Coughlin, 1996, p. 248).   It implies they perform their jobs naturally and easily, so the connotation is positive.

Denotation – A denotation is a word that signifies something specific, like a dictionary meaning (, 2010.) An example from To Be of Use, by Marge Piercy: Workers who do not dally in the shadows (LaRocco & Coughlin, 1996, p. 248). The word “dally” has a literal meaning. It means to waste time by playing when there is work to be done.

Figurative language – Figurative language means either writing or speech that strays from a literal meaning so you can achieve a special meaning or effect (, 2010). An example from Old Florist, by Theodore Roethke: The author asks how the florist could fan life into wilted sweet-peas with his hat (LaRocco & Coughlin, 1996, p. 243).

Simile – A simile is a figure of speech when two things that are not the same are explicitly compared, like “he is like...