AP English Rhetorical Terms (Set 2) flashcards | Quizlet

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  • Coinage

    A word or phrase that is made, invented or fabricated.
    EX: "google it," "blog," "soccer mom"

    Colloquial Expressions

    Words or phrases characteristic of or appropriate to ordinary or familiar conversation.


    an elaborate and surprising figure of speech comparing two very dissimilar things.
    EX: In John Donne's "A Valediction: Forbidding Mourning" (1633) separated lovers are likened to the legs of a compass, the leg drawing the circle eventually returning home to "the fixed foot."


    pertains to actual things, instances, or experiences: opposite of abstract.


    the emotional implications that words may carry


    The repetition of a constant sound within a series of words to produce a harmonious effect.
    EX: "And each slow dusk a drawing-down of blinds."

    Defensive, Offensive

    A method of argumentation in which the speaker or writer defends her own views (defensive) and/or attacks the views of others (offensive).


    the specific, exact meaning of a word, independent of its emotional coloration or associations


    the choice of words in a work of literature and an element of style important to the work's effectiveness.


    language used to distort and manipulate rather than to communicate.
    EX: downsize, RIF (reduction in force): fire employees.


    methods of drawing attention and diverting attention.


    The omission of a word or words necessary for complete construction but understood in the context.
    EX: "The eyes of others our prisons; their thoughts our cages."

    Emotional Appeal

    exploiting an audience's feelings of pity or fear to make a case

    Epistrophe (eh-PISS-truh-FEE)

    Figure of repetition that occurs when the last word or set of words in one sentence, clause, or phrase is repeated one or more times at the end of successive sentences, clauses, or phrases.
    EX: "...and that government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth." - Abraham Lincoln

    Ethical Appeal

    establishing one's credibility with the audience by appearing to be knowledgeable about one's subject and benevolent


    The belief in the inherent superiority of one's own group and culture.


    the substitution of an inoffensive, indirect, or agreeable expression for a word or phrase perceived as socially unacceptable or unnecessarily harsh.
    EX: "overweight" rather than "fat," "disadvantaged" rather than "poor"

    Figurative Language

    The use of words outside their literal or usual meanings, used to add freshness and suggest associations and comparisons that create effective images.


    A figure of speech in which conscious exaggeration is used without the intent of literal persuasion.
    EX: "No; this my hand will rather/The multitudinous seas incarnadine/
    Making the green one red" (Macbeth)


    the use of language to convey sensory experience, most often through the creation of pictorial images through figurative language.
    EX: "Shall I compare thee to a summer's day."

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