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NAME: _________________________________________

Ms. Matis

The Outsiders by S.E. Hinton - Literary Terms

You are required to know the definitions of each literary term listed below as we
read, study, and discuss the novel. You should expect them to appear on quizzes,
assignments, and tests.
Plot is made up of five parts:

Exposition: The first part of a story; introduces characters, setting, and conflict by
providing pertinent background information
Inciting Incident: Precise moment in the story where the conflict begins
Complication(s): Events that further develop and complicate the conflict
Climax: The point in the story where the nature of the conflict changes in some
profound way -- often referred to as the turning point
Resolution: The point in the story where the conflict(s) is/are resolved; the story
is brought to a close.

Conflict: a struggle or clash between opposing characters, forces, or emotions

Internal conflict: A struggle between opposing needs, desires, or emotions
within a single character.

External conflict: When a character struggles against an outside force:

another character, society as a whole, or something in nature.
Theme: An insight or truth revealed by the author in a work of literature.
Protagonist: The main character that moves the action of the story
forward in pursuit of a goal. The protagonist is often, but not always, the
Antagonist: The character or force that blocks the protagonist. The
antagonist is often, but not always, the villain.
Minor characters: Additional characters in the story who influence, assist
or interact with the protagonist or antagonist in some way
Setting: The time and place of a story or play.
Irony: When what actually happens is the opposite of what is expected or
Foreshadowing: The authors use of clues to hint at events that will occur later
in the plot to arouse the readers curiosity and increase suspense.
Suspense: The uncertainty or anxiety the reader feels about what is going to
happen next in a story.
Figurative Language includes:
Simile: An indirect comparison between two seemingly unlike things using
a connective word such as like, as, than, or resembles.

NAME: _________________________________________

Ms. Matis

Metaphor: A direct comparison between two unlike things without using a

connective word such as like, as, than, or resembles.
Personification: A type of metaphor in which a nonhuman thing or quality
is given human characteristics or qualities.
First Person Point of View: The narrator, using the first person pronoun I, is a character in
the story. The readers hear and see only what the narrator hears and sees.