Glossary of Terms
2. Asyndeton: Omitting conjunctions between words, phrase, or clauses.
As we see, the tweeter above has composed a list of things “at the bottom of the ocean”. He does not use the word “and” after “rocks,” as is traditional.
16. Rhetorical Question: A question in which the answer is obvious and is usually only used for effect, to provoke thought, or to draw an obvious conclusion from the facts given.
Notice, the tweeter gives us supposed facts and then asks a question that has an obvious answer,no. We are meant to analyze the facts given in the first two phrases, and come to a unanimous conclusion.
26. Analogy: Comparing two things which are usually very similar, for the purpose of showing how one idea is similar to another.
The tweeter describes one action as having similar qualities as another action performed by the same person.
27. Metaphor: Compares two things by replacing one with the other. That is, a metaphor is a statement saying that one thing IS the other.
In this case, the tweet has replaced a woman’s heart with a “deep ocean of secrets”. It does not intend to say that a woman’s heart is literally a body of water, but rather, that it is like an ocean.
32. Hyperbole: An exaggerated statement clearly used for its effects or to emphasize a point.
Obviously, the tweeter will not actually cross the ocean nor can he physically bring someone the moon. It is a statement which emphasizes the lengths he would go to for someone’s love.
33. Allusion: a short, informal reference to a famous person, or event. Usually, someone or something universally known and having to do with the sentence subject-matter.
In this case, the tweet is making a reference to a famous author in whose works there seems to be a recurring scene. He is relating it to a series of beer commercials which seem to be reminiscent of those works.
36. Epithet: an adjective or adjective phrase that qualifies a noun by mentioning a key characteristic of it.
The tweeter here is describing a key characteristic of the ocean, the fact that it is blue and that it is unknown.
My short story, “The Handsomest Drowned Man in the World”, entails the finding of a drowned man at the beach, the village women’s examining of him, then essentially, the canonization of him by the people. The women realize how beautiful and large he is when they are prepping him for a proper funeral. After seeing what a unique man he is, they give him an identity, assuming all kinds of things about his personality. The women name him Esteban, insisting that is his name. They hand-sow clothes for him and attach holy keepsakes to his body for his safety. The village believes that he may come back one day to visit. They modify their houses and paint them in bright colors to ensure Esteban’s spirit is comfortable in their town. They give the handsome man an identity and make his hometown their village since his origins were unknown.
In search of rhetorical devices, I decided to search for the term “ocean”. In my finding’s of rhetorical devices, I discovered that phrases with the word “ocean” are often used to inspire hope, or to describe love or adoring feelings. That is, with the exception of all the tweets about Frank Ocean (of whom I’ve never heard of until now). Many of the tweets containing “ocean” were used metaphorically; to compare to something in order to convey a sense of deepness or mystery. Also, I find that we are inclined to use metaphors, even if we don’t realize we are doing it. In many of the cases, the most informal of statements use some type of rhetorical device, whether intentional or not. However, I do find that the amount of similes and metaphorical phrases used in tweets are far more than i expected to find.
Initially, I was discouraged with the task at hand. After all, how much can one actually accomplish with 140 words. Surely, the limitations pose a problem. However, I have discovered that perhaps it is the 140-word limitation which inspires tweeter’s to make do with what they have. The result’s are: poetical, yet, concise phrases, metaphorical references and tendencies to eliminate unnecessary conjuctions.