Questions tagged [style]

Questions related to the style of a literary work or a specific author, i.e. the way in which word choice, sentence structure, imagery, figurative devices, repetition and other aspect of language are used to achieve certain effects.

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is it possible to adapt ancient graeco-roman prosodic styles, forms, principles, modifications into modern verses? [closed]

is it possible to adapt ancient graeco-roman prosodic styles, forms, principles, modifications into modern verses? does anybody know good authors who write in vernacular or modern languages with greek ...
jacklhoward's user avatar
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1 answer
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Prosodic features and rules for Miltonic verses?

Are there any special prosodic features to Milton's blank verse? Is it just unrhyming iambic pentameter, or does it have any restrictions on what the final sound in a line must be like even though ...
jacklhoward's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
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What is this "flashforward" technique called?

I was reading The Elusive Samurai, a manga by Yusei Matsui, which is set in the XIV century in Japan. The author uses some kind of special "flashforward" in which the characters, mostly ...
10Seconds's user avatar
3 votes
0 answers
147 views

How does the style of Jamaica Kincaid's "Girl" affect the way it's read?

Jamaica Kincaid's "Girl" is written in a very distinct style. The story is made up of one very long sentence, with different phrases separated by semicolons, each phrase giving a different ...
Mithical's user avatar
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Use of archaic language in certain passages in Evelina

In Evelina by Frances Burney, Rev. Mr. Villars' letters to Evelina as well as Sir John Belmont's addresses to Evelina or generally his speech during their meetings are often heavy with use of archaic ...
Farnaz Jahanbakhsh's user avatar
2 votes
3 answers
128 views

Is there a subgenre or style where a work is made of parts that can be considered works themselves?

Typically, a long text is structured into parts, like chapters or sections. These parts have no sense, or a different sense, when they are read apart, independently of the main work. But a writer ...
nightcod3r's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
383 views

What does it mean for philosophical writing to be great, significant literary works?

British philosopher Nigel Warburton says the same thing in his books. Emboldenings are mine. I know that some French literature syllabi include Camus and Sartre. But at least in English, I have never ...
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7 votes
1 answer
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Why aren't God's pronouns capitalized in Paradise Lost?

I noticed that God's pronouns are not capitalized in Paradise Lost. Take for example Book III lines 62-3: "on his right/The radiant image of his glory sat..." I would expect a Christian ...
Sarah's user avatar
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4 votes
1 answer
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Is "The Blazing World" written in a standard style for Cavendish's time?

I've been assigned The Blazing World by Margaret Cavendish to read in my literature class. The first thing that struck me about the writing is how long the sentences are. It takes a mental settling-in ...
bobble's user avatar
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2 votes
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Writing style in Isaac Asimov's short story "Nightfall"

I just finished reading the short story "Nightfall" by Isaac Asimov. For some reason, Asimov's writing style reminded me vaguely of the young adult romance novels I used to read in my teens. ...
user392289's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
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What distinguishes Maupassant's style from Flaubert's?

Suppose you were given a passage in French that you had not seen before, written either by Flaubert or Maupassant. Suppose that nothing about the subject matter or vocabulary gives a hint as to its ...
Jacob Wegelin's user avatar
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Why is Len Deighton so fond of American English?

I am British and have lived in Britain my entire life. I have never heard anyone refer to an estate car as a “station wagon”. I have never heard anyone refer to a criminal as a “hood”. I have never ...
Edward Hubbard's user avatar
6 votes
1 answer
3k views

Why does Tolkien use neither quotes nor cursive writing, and all lower-case, in this specific "quote"?

Above the arch there was a lamp, and beneath it swung a large signboard: a fat white pony reared up on its hind legs. Over the door was painted in white letters: the prancing pony by barliman ...
Yurechko's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
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What if it were named '*The* Animal Farm'?

This question was inspired by a recent comment to a previous question of mine. In that question, I asked about the literary effect of dropping the articles from titles of novels and films. Even there, ...
linguisticturn's user avatar
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1 answer
640 views

What does it mean for literature to be “reflective”?

The book-review and -recommendation site The Storygraph allows users to categorise books in various ways such as adventurous, funny, inspiring, and reflective. Some (fiction) books I know have been ...
Wrzlprmft's user avatar
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7 votes
1 answer
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Meaning of dash and initial substitution in Charlotte Brontë's Villette

The usage of dashes to obscure personal/place names and dates in Victorian literature has been widely noted, but I don't feel that the reasons that are usually given help me understand this case. I'm ...
Alice's user avatar
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1 answer
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Why did Tennyson write "The Brook" from the brook's first-person perspective?

In the poem "The Brook", Tennyson speaks about the journey of a small brook which later joins a mighty river. The poem is narrated in the first person by the small brook: I come from haunts ...
Knight wants Loong back's user avatar
2 votes
0 answers
164 views

Poems or stories with no repeated words?

I am after a poem/story that has no repetitions in words, further, is this a type of writing style? Are there any famous examples where this is the case? Repetition is the act of repeating or ...
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1 vote
1 answer
145 views

Was Shaw's "Arms and the Man" inspired by Shakespeare?

In Act III of the play Arms and the Man by George Bernard Shaw, Sergius says to Louka, If these hands ever touch you again, they shall touch my affianced bride. Those words reminded me of ...
Solomon's user avatar
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Why does Tagore not consistently use ‘thou’ when addressing the supreme being in Gitanjali?

The large majority of poems in the English version of Tagore's Gitanjali address a supreme being. Tagore uses the pronouns "thou", "thee" and "thy" in almost all of these ...
Tsundoku's user avatar
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Why are Shakespearean sonnets called Shakespearean sonnets?

The term Shakespearean sonnet is frequently used for sonnets with a particular verse pattern and rhyme scheme, namely ABAB CDCD EFEF GG. But from what I can find with a little reading online, this ...
Rand al'Thor's user avatar
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2 votes
2 answers
86 views

To whom does "cheery and sceptical" refer in "The Just Men of Cordova"?

In chapter 12 of The Just Men of Cordova (1917) by Edgar Wallace, the author was describing a crowd in a horse racing: There were regular followers of the game who had known no holiday, and had ...
Ahmed Samir's user avatar
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8 votes
1 answer
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Why does Poe's "Arthur Gordon Pym" become so Technical and Scientific all of a sudden?

I was re-reading Edgar Allen Poe's magnificently disturbing novel, The Narrative of Arthur Gordon Pym of Nantucket, this last month and began to wonder why suddenly, starting with Chapter 14 and going ...
Tom O' Bedlam's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
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Identify rhetorical/stylistic device in Tanpınar's The Time Regulation Institute

Is this an example of any rhetorical/stylistic device or literary technique? But can one really call it a life? If to live is to endure endless pain and destitution and to suffer humiliation so deep ...
krenkz's user avatar
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1 answer
167 views

Why is Szymborska's "Tarsier" sometimes written (in translation) with simplistic grammar?

Szymborska's poem "Tarsier" ("Tarsjusz" in the original Polish) has been translated, in a version that says "Translations and Comments by Magnus J. Krynski and Robert A. ...
Rand al'Thor's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
124 views

What is the intention and purpose behind the "dash style" book format compared to the "quote style" one?

I'm reading a book which is formatted like this: -- No! said Gandalf, looking around. We must not go further before we have had a sip of the elf water! The old wizard looked very worried. It's ...
Serafino's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
167 views

How does That Hideous Strength show the influence of Charles Williams?

Wikipedia says, without citation, that C. S. Lewis's novel That Hideous Strength was "heavily influenced by the writing of Lewis's friend and fellow Inkling Charles Williams". I did notice that this ...
Rand al'Thor's user avatar
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2 votes
0 answers
29 views

Did Maupassant adapt the style and content of his stories to the newspapers that published them?

Guy de Maupassant published his short stories and novellas in newspapers and periodicals such as Le Figaro, Gil Blas, Le Gaulois and L'Écho de Paris before they were published in book form. Le Figaro ...
Tsundoku's user avatar
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Is Williams's This Is Just to Say an imagist poem, an objectivist poem or neither?

The Wikipedia article about the short poem "This Is Just to Say" claims the text is an imagist poem without backing up that claim. Williams contributed to the anthology Des Imagistes, published in ...
Tsundoku's user avatar
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0 votes
1 answer
125 views

How does The Meursault Investigation reference The Fall?

Kamel Daoud's novel The Meursault Investigation (Meursault, contre-enquête, 2013) is a retelling of and sequel to The Stranger / L'Étranger by Albert Camus. But that is not the only Camus novel it ...
Tsundoku's user avatar
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1 vote
0 answers
43 views

What features distinguish the hymnic-epic style from Standard Babylonian?

In the general introduction to Before the Muses: An Anthology of Akkadian Literature (third edition, CDL Press, 2005) Benjamin R. Foster discusses the "Akkadian literary languages": The Babylonians ...
Tsundoku's user avatar
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3 votes
1 answer
653 views

Why is Cormac McCarthy's prose so often described as "sparse"

It is not uncommon to hear the work of American author Cormac McCarthy described as "sparse", "terse", "spartan" or some other similar descriptor. Some examples: An extensive body of criticism ...
Matt Thrower's user avatar
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2 votes
1 answer
501 views

Did James Joyce's writing style influence Ernest Hemingway?

I'm doing a comparison paper, and I think there is something in common between Joyce's and Hemingway's short story writing: concise but powerful. Is there any evidence that Hemingway's writing style ...
Tai Johnny's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
85 views

Books that are narrated using various points of view of the main characters

I recently read the book The Girl on the Train by Paula Hawkins. I found the way the story is told based on the different viewpoints of the main characters very interesting. Is there a name for this ...
DanielTheRocketMan's user avatar
7 votes
1 answer
154 views

Why is there no spelling consistency in Robert Ludlum's books?

I just started reading "The Bourne Supremacy" and I see that in some places Robert Ludlum spells things the British way, and in others the American way. For example, on one page you'd see "favorite" ...
pavel_orekhov's user avatar
4 votes
1 answer
159 views

Do Orwell's and E. B. White's essays belong to a school?

I have always been charmed by George Orwell's and E. B. White's essays. They're insidiously plain, but extremely pleasant to read. The way that they talk is so different from authors today (for ...
Sermo's user avatar
  • 149
-4 votes
1 answer
114 views

How's Thomas Babington Macaulay's sentence chiding Samuel Johnson 'a masterpiece of balance'?

Prof. Brooks Landon, U. Iowa, Ph.D. U. Texas at Austin. Building Great Sentences: How to Write the Kinds of Sentences You Love to Read (Great Courses) (2013). pp 199-200.         Thomas Babington ...
user avatar
-3 votes
1 answer
177 views

Why did Conrad not add commas to lengthy sentences to make them more readable?

Prof. Brooks Landon, U. Iowa, Ph.D. U. Texas at Austin. Building Great Sentences: How to Write the Kinds of Sentences You Love to Read (Great Courses) (2013). p. 124.     Listen to the striking ...
user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
93 views

Why don’t writers layer and number lengthy sentences?

Prof. Brooks Landon, U. Iowa, Ph.D. U. Texas at Austin. Building Great Sentences: How to Write the Kinds of Sentences You Love to Read (Great Courses) (2013). pp 55-56. Why don’t writers tier long ...
user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
153 views

Why didn't Faulkner split a 118-word sentence into three, In "Barn Burning" when he writes about the boy protagonist?

Prof. Brooks Landon, U. Iowa, Ph.D. U. Texas at Austin. Building Great Sentences: How to Write the Kinds of Sentences You Love to Read (Great Courses) (2013). pp 16-17.      I like ...
user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
108 views

Is there a name for this narrative technique or style?

As I have been recently reading the books and short stories that comprise Eric Flint's 1632/Ring of Fire series, I have noticed a narrative style that I have not seen before. These books are written ...
Mike's user avatar
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9 votes
2 answers
792 views

What is the literary effect of dropping articles from titles?

Quite a few novels and films have titles which, if they appeared as phrases in everyday speech or writing, would normally have to be preceded by an article or other determiner. Some examples: Animal ...
linguisticturn's user avatar
6 votes
2 answers
218 views

Style of poetry that plays with typographic rivers

In typography, rivers, or rivers of white, are gaps in typesetting, which appear to run through a paragraph of text, due to a coincidental alignment of spaces. River (typography), Wikipedia. I was ...
villasv's user avatar
  • 161
4 votes
1 answer
89 views

The literary study of scientific argument

I just discovered the book The Literary Structure of Scientific Argument: Historical Studies, edited by Peter Dear (University of Pennsylvania Press, 1991). To me, that seems like an oxymoron: how can ...
Curious George's user avatar
4 votes
2 answers
187 views

Why does Dennis Brown say Hughes's Crow is "a sly parody of Eliot's later style"?

In Dennis Brown's The Poetry of Postmodernity, in the chapter dedicated to Ted Hughes' Crow, the author comments: Crow reads like some checklist of postmodernist techniques [...] [Including] ...
HeyJude's user avatar
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9 votes
2 answers
1k views

Use of "limited third-person point of view", vs "omniscient third person point of view" over the past century or so

I notice that a lot of popular recent fiction, for example Robert Jordan's "Wheel of Time" , and George R.R. Martin's "A Song of Ice and Fire" are written in limited/subjective third-person point of ...
Frames Catherine White's user avatar
5 votes
1 answer
262 views

What makes the writing style of The Dynasts so distinctive?

Reading Poetry Foundation's page on Thomas Hardy, I came across this description of his epic drama The Dynasts, set during the Napoleonic Wars and published in 1904-1908: Hardy also pioneered a new ...
Rand al'Thor's user avatar
  • 72.3k
4 votes
0 answers
124 views

(Why) Is there a shift in style in Toll the Hounds?

By and large, I have found the writing style in the Malazan Book of the Fallen to be consistent across the first seven novels. They were all written by Steven Erikson. However, I feel there is a ...
muru's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
5k views

What is the effect of a text written in present tense and first-person? [closed]

An example of such a text (from Michael Morpurgo's Private Peaceful): I see men running, staggering, falling I am coughing, retching, choking. I have to breathe now, I can't run without ...
MythicalCode_'s user avatar
1 vote
0 answers
29 views

Why are Sidorio chapters narrated in the present tense in Tide of Terror?

Sidorio, the main antagonist of the Vampirates series, has several stand-alone scenes dotted through the second novel, Tide of Terror. Although the series as a whole is almost entirely narrated in the ...
Rand al'Thor's user avatar
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