The spectacle a play presents in performance, including the position of actors on stage, the scenic background, the props and costumes, and the lighting and sound effects. Tennessee Williams describes these in his detailed stage directions for and also in his production notes for the play.
The main character of a literary work--Hamlet and Othello in the plays named after them, Gregor Samsa in Kafka's , Paul in Lawrence's "Rocking-Horse Winner."
* * *Marjorie Bowen, William Hogarth: The Cockney's Mirror (London: Methuen, 1936).This study on Hogarth "is divided into four parts; the first part gives the background of William Hogarth's life and pictures, the second recounts his career and character and his attitude to his own genius, the third gives the stories, actors (real or imagined) of the principal pictures and prints, and the fourth describes and analyses the work from the point of view of aesthetics."ONLINE ARTICLES AND EXHIBITIONS ON WILLIAM HOGARTHClick on the area you are interested in:Online Biographies of William HogarthOnline Essays on HogarthOnline Exhibitions and Reviews of Museum ExhibitionsBook ReviewsCourse Descriptions, Lecture Resources, and some other Educational SitesMiscellaneousOther Areas of Interest in Hogarth ONLINE BIOGRAPHIES OF WILLIAM HOGARTH:Dale Keiger, "A Scholar's Progress", Johns Hopkins Magazine, November 2000.
The contributions (by Michel Baridon, David Bindman, Jacques Carré, Pierre Georgel, Bernd Krysmanski, Marie-Madeleine Martinet, Frédéric Ogée, Roy Porter and Peter Wagner) deal with Hogarth's eccentricity; his ambiguous position as an artist; and the ambivalence of his pictures, which "result from his boldest artistic originality: his adoption of a polycentric stage, on which the 'dumb show' exhibited by his 'players' offers concomitant areas of meaning".
Explores engravings by Hogarth; poems by John Milton, Alexander Pope, Christopher Smart, William Cowper, and William Blake; plays by Nicholas Rowe and George Lillo; paintings and sculptures by Benjamin West, Johan Zoffany, Joseph Wright of Derby, and Louis-François Roubiliac; and oratorios by George Frederic Handel.
The dictionary meaning of a word. Writers typically play off a word's denotative meaning against its connotations, or suggested and implied associational implications. In the following lines from Peter Meinke's "Advice to My Son" the references to flowers and fruit, bread and wine denote specific things, but also suggest something beyond the literal, dictionary meanings of the words:
A customary feature of a literary work, such as the use of a in Greek tragedy, the inclusion of an explicit moral in a , or the use of a particular rhyme scheme in a . Literary conventions are defining features of particular literary genres, such as novel, short story, ballad, sonnet, and play.
Deus ex machina
A god who resolves the entanglements of a play by supernatural intervention. The Latin phrase means, literally, "a god from the machine." The phrase refers to the use of artificial means to resolve the plot of a play.
An imagined story, whether in prose, poetry, or drama. Ibsen's Nora is fictional, a "make-believe" character in a play, as are Hamlet and Othello. Characters like Robert Browning's Duke and Duchess from his poem "My Last Duchess" are fictional as well, though they may be based on actual historical individuals. And, of course, characters in stories and novels are fictional, though they, too, may be based, in some way, on real people. The important thing to remember is that writers embellish and embroider and alter actual life when they use real life as the basis for their work. They fictionalize facts, and deviate from real-life situations as they "make things up."
The associations called up by a word that goes beyond its dictionary meaning. Poets, especially, tend to use words rich in connotation. Dylan Thomas's "Do Not Go Gentle into That Good Night" includes intensely connotative language, as in these lines: "Good men, the last wave by, crying how bright / Their frail deeds might have danced in a green bay, / Rage, rage against the dying of the light."
An interruption of a work's chronology to describe or present an incident that occurred prior to the main time frame of a work's action. Writers use flashbacks to complicate the sense of chronology in the plot of their works and to convey the richness of the experience of human time. Faulkner's story "A Rose for Emily" includes flashbacks.
A character who contrasts and parallels the main character in a play or story. Laertes, in , is a foil for the main character; in , Emilia and Bianca are foils for Desdemona.
Hints of what is to come in the action of a play or a story. Ibsen's includes foreshadowing as does Synge's . So, too, do Poe's "Cask of Amontillado" and Chopin's "Story of an Hour."