This week was a normal rhetoric filled week, a rhetoric filled week in which we learned some new devices. For example, we learned about Zeugma, which is;
a device in which unexpected items in a sentence are linked together by a shared word. If that sounds rather broad, it is.
Some Zeugma examples include:
~ The kleptomaniac magician stole the show and my wallet.
~My mother lost her keys, her coat, and finally, her temper.
Although many of the rhetorical devices we study are complicated and hard to understand, zeugma is fairly simple to grasp.
Another rhetorical device we encountered is Parataxis:
Parataxis involves listing a series of clauses with no conjunctions… Parataxis often implies a sense of immediacy
Parataxis is another fairly simple rhetorical device to learn. One famous example is Julius Caesar’s quotation:
I came, I saw, I conquered.
Another example of Parataxis would be:
Come into the room, look at the clock, notice the issue.
Parataxis, although similar to Asyndeton, should not be confused with it:
Asyndeton leaves out conjunctions in a list or between clauses
Some examples of Asyndeton are:
~He was tall, dark, handsome.
~Jockeying for room on the table were turkey, gravy, mashed potatoes, pies, rolls, cranberry sauce, a cornucopia of vegetables.
And Asyndeton has a close cousin, Polysyndeton:
Polysyndeton puts a conjunction between every item.
Some examples of Polysyndeton include:
~I slithered under the sheets, and under the blankets, and under the top quilt to Evandro the monsters.
~ His hair and face and eyes and mouth combined to form an image of absolute power.
This week’s discussions on the text have been really interesting. Of course, partly in due to The Things They Carriwd being a wonderful text, it is also partly because of the rhetorical devices being really easy to spot, and the separation into different short stories makes it easier to dissect.