Login
Copyright

Ch 4: Understanding Literary Texts

About This Chapter

Use the lessons in this chapter to review ways to analyze and understand literature, both fiction and nonfiction. Get information on poetry terms and plot and characters in drama.

Understanding Literary Texts - Chapter Summary

Brush up on your grasp of the types and characteristics of various literary genres. Our instructors offer information about several types of fiction, and you'll learn about satire and parody as well. Other lessons cover poetry, including the terms used to talk about it.

Literary nonfiction, such as essays and diaries, are topics of several lessons, and you'll also get a review of ways to study drama. By the time you've completed these lessons, you'll have a better understanding of topics including:

  • Types and characteristics of literary genres
  • Novels, novellas and short stories
  • Folktales, myths and legends
  • How to help students understand poetry
  • Metaphors and similes
  • Literary nonfiction
  • Characters, plot, setting and symbolism in drama

Our instructors help you in your study with lively lessons, filled with examples to help you understand the main points. You can watch the video and take the accompanying lesson quizzes on a computer or mobile device, from anywhere you have Internet access. You can print out a sheet of the exam questions for offline study, too.

14 Lessons in Chapter 4: Understanding Literary Texts
Literary Genres: Definition, Types, Characteristics & Examples

1. Literary Genres: Definition, Types, Characteristics & Examples

In this lesson, you will learn what is meant by the term genre. In addition, the main types of literary genres will be described, with examples given for each.

Types of Fiction: Novels, Novellas & Short Stories

2. Types of Fiction: Novels, Novellas & Short Stories

Learn how fiction is organized by length into three categories: novels, novellas and short stories. Explore the general characteristics of each type, and learn about some famous examples.

The Fable, Folktale, Myth, Legend: Differences and Examples

3. The Fable, Folktale, Myth, Legend: Differences and Examples

In this lesson, learn about fables, folktales, myths and legends, stories that entertain and serve instructive or educational purposes. Discover how these types of stories differ from one another and about their prevalence throughout the world.

Satire, Parody, or Spoof: Types of Humorous Writing

4. Satire, Parody, or Spoof: Types of Humorous Writing

Learn about how writers use satire, parody and spoof to make their readers laugh and think. Explore how these forms mock the conventions of specific literary works and genres.

What is Prose? - Finding Meaning in Foreshadowing & Character

5. What is Prose? - Finding Meaning in Foreshadowing & Character

This literature lesson will teach you the difference between prose and other writing. You'll also learn how to analyze characters and foreshadowing to better understand the author's intentions, theme, and underlying meanings.

How to Teach Poetry

6. How to Teach Poetry

Poetry is all around us, from songs on the radio to crazy Dr.Susses books. This lesson will highlight some neat ways to teach poetry in ways that not only provide rigor but also relevance.

Poetic Devices: Definition, Types & Examples

7. Poetic Devices: Definition, Types & Examples

There are many types of poetic devices that can be used to create a powerful, memorable poem. In this lesson, we are going to learn about these devices and look at examples of how they are used. We will also discuss their purpose to understand the importance of using them effectively.

Glossary of Literary Terms: Poetry

8. Glossary of Literary Terms: Poetry

Before you start your study of poetry, you'll want to have these technical, literary and genre terms at your disposal. Read on to learn the basics of analyzing poetry!

What is a Metaphor? - Examples, Definition & Types

9. What is a Metaphor? - Examples, Definition & Types

Metaphors are all around you. They're the bright sparkling lights that turn plain evergreens into Christmas trees. Learn how to spot them, why writers write with them, and how to use them yourself right here.

Similes in Literature: Definition and Examples

10. Similes in Literature: Definition and Examples

Explore the simile and how, through comparison, it is used as a shorthand to say many things at once. Learn the difference between similes and metaphors, along with many examples of both.

What Is Nonfiction? - Definition & Examples

11. What Is Nonfiction? - Definition & Examples

There are a wide variety of genres of literature, but most can be separated into two categories. Watch this video lesson to learn about one of those categories: nonfiction.

Literary Nonfiction: Essays, Diaries, Letters, & More

12. Literary Nonfiction: Essays, Diaries, Letters, & More

Watch this video lesson to explore the world of literary nonfiction. You will learn the similarities and differences between journals, diaries, memoirs and much more.

Literary Nonfiction: Biographies & Autobiographies

13. Literary Nonfiction: Biographies & Autobiographies

Literary nonfiction consists of many types of writing. Two of the most popular types are biographies and autobiographies. Watch this video lesson to learn more about these two types.

Elements of Drama: Characters, Plot, Setting & Symbolism

14. Elements of Drama: Characters, Plot, Setting & Symbolism

Have you ever wondered how actors in a play can convey a story without the audience reading the script? Watch and learn how playwrights use dramatic elements to tell a story on the stage.

Earning College Credit

Did you know… We have over 95 college courses that prepare you to earn credit by exam that is accepted by over 2,000 colleges and universities. You can test out of the first two years of college and save thousands off your degree. Anyone can earn credit-by-exam regardless of age or education level.

To learn more, visit our Earning Credit Page

Transferring credit to the school of your choice

Not sure what college you want to attend yet? Study.com has thousands of articles about every imaginable degree, area of study and career path that can help you find the school that's right for you.

Other Chapters

Other chapters within the Ohio Assessments for Educators - Elementary Education: Practice & Study Guide course

Support