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7th Grade Lit. Terms

Term Definition
character A person, an animal, or even a machine in a story
plot A series of related events in a story, one growing out of another
protagonist The leading character, hero, or heroine of a literary work
conflict A struggle that gives the story its energy
external conflict A character's struggle with another person, or a force of nature (e.g. a tornado, a bear, an icy mountain path)
climax A story's most emotional or suspenseful moment (often a turning point after which everything is different)
resolution The last part of a story when the loose ends of the story are tied up and the story is closed
point of view The vantage point from which a story is told (who is telling the story)
theme The main idea the story expresses about life and people. What the author intends to say to the reader by writing the story. The message we take away from the story
mood the emotional quality of a literary work
exposition the part of the story when the reader learns the background information necessary to understand the story
rising action the part of the story between the exposition and the climax, where most of the events in the story happen
falling action the part of the story after the climax and before the resolution, when the reader learns added information about the story
narrator the character who tells the story to the audience
foreshadowing the use of hints or clues to indicate events and situations that will occur later in the plot
suspense the excitement or tension the reader feels during reading
setting the time and place of a story