A figure of speech is the use of a word or a phrase, which transcends its literal interpretation. It can be a special repetition, arrangement or omission of words with literal meaning, or a phrase with a specialized meaning not based on the literal meaning of the words in it, as in idiom, metaphor, simile, hyperbole, personification, or synecdoche. Figures of speech often provide emphasis, freshness of expression, or clarity. However, clarity may also suffer from their use, as any figure of speech introduces an ambiguity between literal and figurative interpretation. A figure of speech is sometimes called a rhetorical figure or a locution. Rhetoric originated as the study of the ways in which a source text can be transformed to suit the goals of the person reusing the material. The four fundamental operations The four fundamental operations, or categories of change, governing the formation of all figures of speech are: Examples Figures of speech come in many varieties.
Culture & Education | HomepageList of forms of word playThis is a list of techniques used in word play with Wikipedia articles. Techniques that involve the phonetic values of words Mondegreen: a mishearing (usually unintentional) ase as a homophone or near-homophone that has as a result acquired a new meaning. The term is often used to refer specifically to mishearings of song lyrics (cf. soramimi).Onomatopoeia: a word or a grouping of words that imitates the sound it is describingRhyme: a repetition of identical or similar sounds in two or more different words Alliteration: matching consonants sounds at the beginning of wordsAssonance: matching vowel soundsConsonance: matching consonant soundsHolorime: a rhyme that encompasses an entire line or phraseSpoonerism: a switch of two sounds in two different words (cf. sananmuunnos)Janusism: the use of phonetics to create a humorous word (e.g. GAYsha from Geisha)) Techniques that involve semantics and the choosing of words Techniques that involve the manipulation of the entire sentence or passage
SourcesRepetition (rhetorical device)Repetition is the simple repeating of a word, within a sentence or a poetical line, with no particular placement of the words, in order to secure emphasis. This is such a common literary device that it is almost never even noted as a figure of speech. It also has connotations to listing for effect and is used commonly by famous poets such as Philip Larkin. Antanaclasis is the repetition of a word or phrase to effect a different meaning "We must all hang together, or assuredly we shall all hang separately." (Benjamin Franklin) Epizeuxis or palilogia is the repetition of a single word, with no other words in between. "Words, words, words." Conduplicatio is the repetition of a word in various places throughout a paragraph. "And the world said, 'Disarm, disclose, or face serious consequences'—and therefore, we worked with the world, we worked to make sure that Saddam Hussein heard the message of the world Anadiplosis is the repetition of the last word of a preceding clause.
Just-world hypothesisThe hypothesis popularly appears in the English language in various figures of speech that imply guaranteed negative reprisal, such as: "You got what was coming to you", "What goes around comes around", and "You reap what you sow". This hypothesis has been widely studied by social psychologists since Melvin J. Lerner conducted seminal work on the belief in a just world in the early 1960s. Research has continued since then, examining the predictive capacity of the hypothesis in various situations and across cultures, and clarifying and expanding the theoretical understandings of just-world beliefs. Emergence Many philosophers and social theorists have observed and considered the phenomenon of belief in a just world. Lerner's work made the just-world hypothesis a focus of research in the field of social psychology. Melvin Lerner Lerner's inquiry was influenced by repeatedly witnessing the tendency of observers to blame victims for their suffering. Early evidence
The Hollow Men Poem TextMistah Kurtz—he dead. A penny for the Old Guy IWe are the hollow menWe are the stuffed menLeaning togetherHeadpiece filled with straw. Alas!Our dried voices, whenWe whisper togetherAre quiet and meaninglessAs wind in dry grassOr rats' feet over broken glassIn our dry cellar Shape without form, shade without colour,Paralysed force, gesture without motion; Those who have crossedWith direct eyes, to death's other KingdomRemember us—if at all—not as lostViolent souls, but onlyAs the hollow menThe stuffed men. IIEyes I dare not meet in dreamsIn death's dream kingdomThese do not appear:There, the eyes areSunlight on a broken columnThere, is a tree swingingAnd voices areIn the wind's singingMore distant and more solemnThan a fading star. Let me be no nearerIn death's dream kingdomLet me also wearSuch deliberate disguisesRat's coat, crowskin, crossed stavesIn a fieldBehaving as the wind behavesNo nearer— Not that final meetingIn the twilight kingdom For Thine isLife isFor Thine is the
Elegant variationIt is the second-rate writers, those intent rather on expressing themselves prettily than on conveying their meaning clearly, & still more those whose notions of style are based on a few misleading rules of thumb, that are chiefly open to the allurements of elegant variation.... There are few literary faults so widely prevalent, & this book will not have been written in vain if the present article should heal any sufferer of his infirmity.The fatal influence is the advice given to young writers never to use the same word twice in a sentence — or within 20 lines or other limit. The advice has its uses; it reminds any who may be in danger of forgetting it that there are such things as pronouns, the substitution of which relieves monotony;... It also gives a useful warning that a noticeable word used once should not be used again in the neighbourhood with a different application. "Inelegant variation" Bryan A. In poetry In other languages Examples See also
The Self-Attribution FallacyIntelligence? Talent? No, the ultra-rich got to where they are through luck and brutality. By George Monbiot. Published in the Guardian 8th November 2011 If wealth was the inevitable result of hard work and enterprise, every woman in Africa would be a millionaire. The findings of the psychologist Daniel Kahneman, winner of a Nobel economics prize, are devastating to the beliefs that financial high-fliers entertain about themselves(1). Such results have been widely replicated. So much for the financial sector and its super-educated analysts. In a study published by the journal Psychology, Crime and Law, Belinda Board and Katarina Fritzon tested 39 senior managers and chief executives from leading British businesses(3). The psychopathic traits on which the bosses scored so highly, Board and Fritzon point out, closely resemble the characteristics that companies look for. This is not to suggest that all executives are psychopaths. This is now changing. It felt like history being made. 3. 4.
Examples of Funny Puns (and Punny Funs)On a good day, if you have the right friends and coworkers, you can expect to hear or read many examples of funny puns. Whether intentional or accidental, a pun is the use of a word or words that either have multiple meanings or sound like other words, the result of which is humorous. There are several different ways to make a pun. One-Word Puns There aren’t really any stand-alone, one-word puns as they all need some kind of context to create the word play. Homophonic Puns Homophonic puns are created by substituting one word for a similar-sounding word. A good pun is its own reword.I bet the butcher the other day that he couldn’t reach the meat that was on the top shelf. Homographic Puns Homographic puns are created in one of two ways: either by using a word that has two different meanings, or by substituting a word with the exact same spelling as the word for which it was substituted. Compound Puns Where do you find giant snails? Funny Animal Puns Sea Creatures and Amphibians Cats and Dogs