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Ch 18: Interpreting Meaning in Literature

About This Chapter

Use this online video lesson to learn how to interpret meaning in literature. Find out how to infer the author's intended meaning and recognize bias in a written text.

How to Interpret Meaning in Literature - Chapter Summary

This chapter is designed to provide you with a formal approach to literary interpretations, including writing structure and literal language. At the beginning of the chapter, you'll learn how the structure of a passage can affect its meaning. Later on, you'll also find out how to infer meaning and recognize assumptions.

The lessons will also include a discussion of literal language and how it affects meaning. After completing this chapter, you should be able to:

  • Explain writing structure and how it can impact meaning
  • Use text to guide your understanding of particular passages
  • Infer the intended meaning of a reading selection
  • Identify examples of literal language
  • Recognize stereotypes and biases in texts

Our online tutorial on literary interpretation and meaning includes video presentations conducted by experienced instructors. In addition to the recorded versions, you will also have access to lesson transcripts. Through the video tags, you can revisit crucial parts of the lessons without having to watch them again! At the end of the chapter, you can also use the online self-assessment quiz to test your basic knowledge of literary interpretation.

6 Lessons in Chapter 18: Interpreting Meaning in Literature
Test your knowledge with a 30-question chapter practice test
Interpreting Literary Meaning: How to Use Text to Guide Your Interpretation

1. Interpreting Literary Meaning: How to Use Text to Guide Your Interpretation

In this lesson, we will discuss how to find and interpret literary meaning in writings. The lesson will focus on using the text to find key elements to guide your interpretation.

What is Inference? - How to Infer Intended Meaning

2. What is Inference? - How to Infer Intended Meaning

In this lesson, we will define the terms inference and intended meaning. We will then discuss what steps to take when making inferences in literature.

Literal Language: Definition & Examples

3. Literal Language: Definition & Examples

Do you sometimes feel like nobody understands you? Well, perhaps you should try using more literal language! Learn more about this form of straightforward expression in this lesson, where you'll also find some literal language in action.

What is Structure in Writing and How Does it Affect Meaning?

4. What is Structure in Writing and How Does it Affect Meaning?

In this lesson, we will define the role of structure in literature. From there, we will look at the different ways to structure fiction and how it affects the meaning.

Recognizing Biases, Assumptions & Stereotypes in Written Works

5. Recognizing Biases, Assumptions & Stereotypes in Written Works

In this lesson, we will define and learn how to recognize biases, assumptions and stereotypes in written works. We will also practice identifying these elements with a few writing samples.

Paralanguage: Definition & Examples

6. Paralanguage: Definition & Examples

You may never have realized it, but you 'speak' paralanguage every day! Come learn more about this method of communication you already know so well and see some examples of how we use it all the time.

Chapter Practice Exam
Test your knowledge of this chapter with a 30 question practice chapter exam.
Not Taken
Practice Final Exam
Test your knowledge of the entire course with a 50 question practice final exam.
Not Taken

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