Literature Glossary

The basic unit of sound
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a vowel sound that is the combination of two separate sounds, where a speaker glides from one to another.
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The act of the vocal chords either vibrating (voiced) or not vibrating (unvoiced) in the production of a consonant sound.
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Place of articulation
The position in the mouth where a consonant sound is produced.
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Manner of articulation
The extent to which airflow is interrupted by parts of the mouth in the production of consonant sounds
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A sound unit with a vowel at its centre
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A regional variety of speech that differs from other regional varieties in terms of pronunciation
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The ways that individuals adjust their speech patterns to match others
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Sound iconicity
the use of the sound system to mirror form or meaning
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Denotative and connotational meanings
the literal (denotative) and associated (connotational) meanings of words
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Figurative language
language used in a non-literal way in order to describe something in another's terms (eg. a simile or metaphor)
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Semantic fields
groups of words connected by a shared meaning.
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words that have equivalent meanings
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words that have contrasting meanings
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words whose meanings contain other words (eg animal contains dog, cat and fish)
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words that can be included in a larger more general category (eg the hyponyms car, bus, areoplane as a form of the hypernym transport)
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Levels of formality
vocabulary styles including slang, colloquial, taboo, formal and frozen levels
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a technical vocabulary associated with a particular occupation or activity
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a language style associated with a particular social group
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a language style associated with a particular geographical region
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the process of new word formation, including the following: Blends, compounds, acronyms, initialisms, eponyms
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Semantic change
the process of words changing meaning, including the following: narrowing, broadening, amelioration, pejoration, semantic reclamation
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the smallest grammatical unit, either a root or an affix
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Root morpheme
a morpheme that can stand on its own as a word
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a morpheme that combines with a root morpheme to create a new word
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a group of words centred around a head word
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Head word
the central word in a phrase which gives the phrase its name (eg noun phrase, adjective phrase) and may be modified by other words
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the adding of additional words to provide more detail to a head word in a phrase either before it (pre-modification) or after it (post-modification)
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a group of words centred around a verb, which may be either grammatically complete (main clause) or incomplete (subordinate clause)
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Active voice
a clause where the agent (doer) of an action is the subject
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Passive voice
a clause where the patient (the entity affected by an action) is in the subject position, and the agent either follows or is left out
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how the time of an event is marked (usually through verb inflection): past, present & future
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another element of marking the time of an event, by specifying whether they are progressive (ongoing) or perfective (completed)
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the joining of two or more independent clauses via coordinating conjunctions. Single words and longer phrases can also be co-ordinated
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the joining of two or more clauses where only one is independent (the main clause) and the others dependent (subordinate clause/clauses)
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Sentence function
the purpose a sentence fulfills in communication: as a statement, question, command or exclamation. These are also referred to in many grammar books as (respectively): declaratives, interrogatives, imperatives and exclamatives
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Word class
the grammatical category into which words can be placed, including noun, adjective, verb, adverb, determiner, pronoun, preposition, conjunction
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an implied meaning that has to be inferred as a result of a conversational maxim being broken
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the understanding of implied meanings
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using language to signal an attitude other than what has been literally expressed
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words that are context-bound where meaning depends on who is using them, and where and when they are being used
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Speech acts
communicative acts that carry meaning beyond the words and phrases used withing them, for example, apologies and promises
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the awareness of others' needs to be approved of and liked (positive politeness) and/or given freedom to express their own identity and choices (negative politeness)
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the concept of how all communication relies on presenting a 'face' to listeners and audiences, and how face-threatening acts (the threat to either positive or negative face) and the management of positive and negative face needs contribute to interac
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Cooperative principles
in conversation: how interaction is generally based upon various kinds of cooperative behaviour between speakers
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Discourse markers
words, phrases or clauses that help to organise what we say or write (eg OK, So, "As I was saying...")
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non-essential elements of clauses (usually adverbials) that can be omitted (eg I'll see you in the morning")
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sentence adverbs that work to express an attitude or stance towards material that follows (eg "Frankly, I'm appalled at what she said" or "Sadly, not one of them survived")
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Narrative structures
how events, actions and processes are sequenced when recounting a story.
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Anaphoric reference
making reference back to something previously identified in a text (often using pronouns to an already established reference point eg "The woman stood by the door. She made detailed notes of what she could see")
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Cataphoric reference
making reference forwards to something as yet unidentified in a text. Eg " it was warm. It was living. It was Uncle George."
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Exophoric reference
making reference to things beyond the language of a text itself (as opposed to endophoric, which is within the language of the text) perhaps within a speaker's immediate physical context e.g. "Look at that"
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the use of discourses from one field as part of another (eg the use of science discourses in the selling of beauty products, or the use of commercial discourses in education)
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Critical discourse analysis
the use of linguistic analysis to explore ideologies, positions and values of texts and their producers.
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the way in which a text is physically structured
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Typographical features
the features of fonts used in texts such as font type, size and colour.
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Orthographical features
the features of the writing system such as spelling, capitalisation and punctuation
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Multimodal texts
texts that rely on the interplay of different codes (eg the visual, the written and the auditory) to help shape meaning.
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used in many different (and sometimes contradictory) ways in language study. Can be used to refer to a mode of language (e.g. spoken or written discourse), a register (e.g. medical or legal discourse), a way of thinking about and presenting something
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emphasis of key events or ideas in texts through the use of attention-seeking devises that repeat content (paralleslism) or break established patterns (deviation)
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External: breaking from the normal conventions of language use, for example in the use of nonsense words or ungrammatical constructions. Internal: breaking from a pattern that has previously been set up in a text for a striking effect.
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the degree to which a text displays qualities that mean people see it as literary and as literature. However it is best to think of literariness as a continuum rather than viewing texts as being absolutely 'literary' or 'non-literary'
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the way in which language is communicated between text producer and text receiver and the physical channel through which this is carried out. Could use the visual or auditory channel at simplest. Encompasses ideas of planning and spontaneity etc.
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Poetic Voice
the way in which a sense of identity is projected through language choices so as to give the impression of a distinct persona with a personal history and a set of beliefs and values.
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how a text producer places or orientates him/herself to the subject being presented and towards the audience or reader being addressed.
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a variety (or style) of language that is associated with a particular situation of use. Register may be either written, spoken or multimodal.
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Other cards in this set

Card 2


a vowel sound that is the combination of two separate sounds, where a speaker glides from one to another.



Card 3


The act of the vocal chords either vibrating (voiced) or not vibrating (unvoiced) in the production of a consonant sound.


Preview of the back of card 3

Card 4


The position in the mouth where a consonant sound is produced.


Preview of the back of card 4

Card 5


The extent to which airflow is interrupted by parts of the mouth in the production of consonant sounds


Preview of the back of card 5
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