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What is Diction? - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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Do Now : Read the following sentences and describe the difference in tone. What did the writer do to alter the tone?. Dearest students, I humbly entreat you to abandon your mobile devices, and instead devote your attention to today’s rhetoric lesson.

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Do Now: Read the following sentences and describe the difference in tone. What did the writer do to alter the tone?

Dearest students, I humbly entreat you to abandon your mobile devices, and instead devote your attention to today’s rhetoric lesson.

Yo, listen up! Drop your iphoneand get with the English program!

what is diction
What is Diction?

Diction is the author’s word choice. Diction contributes to the overall tone of a text.

elevated or formal diction
Elevated or Formal Diction

Circle the words in this paragraph that contribute to the author’s formal diction.

In looking at many small points of difference between species, which, as far as our ignorance permits us to judge, seem quite unimportant, we must not forget that climate, food, etc., have no doubt produced some direct effect. It is also necessary to bear in mind that owing to the law of correlation, when one part varies and the variations are accumulated through natural selection, other modifications, often of the most unexpected nature, will ensue. (Charles Darwin, The Origin of Species)

middle diction
Middle Diction

It is an overlooked fact that children—from elementary school through high school—get an hour less sleep each night than they did thirty years ago. While modern parents obsess about our babies sleep, this concern falls off the priority list after pre-school. Even kindergarteners get thirty minutes less a night than they used to.

(Bronson and Merryman, Nurture Shock)

colloquial or low diction
Colloquial or Low Diction

“Shoot, I must have lived such a doggoned sheltered life as a normal, independent American up there in the Last Frontier, schooled with only public education and a lowly state university degree, because obviously I haven't learned enough to dismiss common sense.”

(Sarah Palin, on opposition to offshore oil drilling, Facebook note, June 13, 2010)

poetic diction
Poetic Diction

But, soft! what light through yonder window breaks?It is the east, and Juliet is the sun.Arise, fair sun, and kill the envious moon,Who is already sick and pale with grief,That thou her maid art far more fair than she:Be not her maid, since she is envious;Her vestal livery is but sick and greenAnd none but fools do wear it; cast it off.It is my lady, O, it is my love!O, that she knew she were!

we do diction excerpts
We Do: Diction Excerpts
  • On your own, determine the diction, tone, and rhetorical devices used in your assigned excerpt.
  • You will then group together with students who examined the other excerpts, and share your answers.
you do turbulence
You Do: Turbulence

Read and annotate the Sedaris piece “Turbulence” and answer the discussion questions that follow.

Annotation Guide:

-Underline words that reveal diction and tone

-Ask at least 1 question/make 1 comment per page.

-Label rhetorical devices