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Thread: Literary Catharsis.

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    MANICHAEAN MANICHAEAN's Avatar
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    Literary Catharsis.

    Literary Catharsis.

    As I no longer seem to have had the urge to write for nearly two years now, I decided, (basically out of boredom), to go back to some of the basics of the English language and bone up on them.

    It proved an interesting morning’s excursion and I would like to share some of it with fellow Lit Netters.

    I started with the device of “onomatopoeia”, which in its more complicated usage takes the form of “phanopoeia.” As I understand it phanopoeia is a form of onomatopoeia that describes the sense of things rather than their natural sounds. Can anyone give me an example please?

    Moving on to “antithesis,” I was referred to Alexander Pope in his “An Essay on Criticism” where he writes “To err is human; to forgive divine.”
    I would read into this that fallibility is a trait of humans and that God, his creator, is most forgiving. Through these antithetical ideas, Pope seems to reveal the basic nature of human beings. He wants to say that God is forgiving because his creation is erring. And yet is not the standards of life itself, that we should strive for, antithetical to human nature?

    One of the final ones I looked at was “ad hominem,” a literary term that involves commenting on or against an opponent to undermine him/her instead of their arguments. Immediately Trump came to mind, especially the phrase used against Clinton in one of the debates “You are the devil.”
    Our Donald, unwittingly or otherwise, is one of the greatest current proponents of this literary device.The fact is that ad hominem is a kind of fallacy that leaves a great impression on an audience’s mind. It is an argumentative flaw in which although, the personal attack that has been made on the opponent might not even have a speck of truth in it, it somehow makes the audience biased. Ironically, despite being flawed, ad hominem has an amazing power of persuasion. As has been seen.
    Last edited by MANICHAEAN; 12-10-2016 at 03:27 AM.

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    This, I think, is a phanopoeia: boink. Or its echoing variant: boioioink.
    Last edited by Dreamwoven; 12-10-2016 at 06:57 AM.

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    One that I came across. D.H Lawrence in his poem “Snake”:

    “He reached down from a fissure in the earth-wall in the gloom
    And trailed his yellow-brown slackness soft-bellied down, over the
    edge of the stone trough
    And rested his throat upon the stone bottom,
    And where the water had dripped from the tap, in a small clearness
    He sipped with his straight mouth,…”

    The use of “hissing” sounds/words as in “fissure,” “slackness,” “stone,” “rested,” “clearness,” “sipped,” “straight,” creates or adds to a picture of a snake in the mind.

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