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Tone (literature)
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Tone is a literary technique that is a part of composition, which encompasses the attitudes toward
the subject and toward the audience implied in a literary work. Tone may be formal, informal,
intimate, solemn, somber, playful, serious, ironic, guilty, condescending, or many other possible
attitudes. Tone and mood are not interchangeable. The tone of a story is often defined as what the
author is feeling towards the subject, rather than what the reader feels. What the reader feels is
defined as the mood.



Under the element of cadence, the tone of a piece of work can be found in many ways. All pieces of
literature, even official documents, have some sort of tone.
In many cases, the tone of a piece of work may change. Elements of tone include diction, or word
choice; syntax, the grammatical arrangement of words in a text for effect; imagery, or vivid appeals to
the senses; details, facts that are included or omitted; extended metaphor, language that compares
seemingly unrelated things throughout the composition.
Tone in literature, the manner in which written words might be said (for example, sarcastic, mild,
witty, angry).
Tone is hard to separate from mood, but in general the tone of a work can gradually shift (perhaps
from sarcastic to ironic or from angry to remorseful), while mood describes the feeling of the entire
piece. The tone of a work is produced mainly by the writer's diction or choice of words, but stylistic
choices concerning syntax, line or sentence length, imagery, and so forth may also contribute.
Tone is an element used frequently in poetry to convey feeling and emotion, and set the mood for
the work. It is important to note that tone and mood are not interchangeable.



Antagonist/Archenemy Characterization Deuteragonist False protagonist Focal character[24/02/2012 12:48:38]

Tone (literature) - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


Foil character Protagonist Supporting character Tritagonist Viewpoint character

Climax Conflict Dnouement Dialogue Dramatic structure Exposition Falling action
Plot device Subplot Trope-Clich


Dystopia Fictional city Fictional country Fictional location Fictional universe Utopia


Leitmotif Moral Motif


Diction Figure of speech Imagery Literary technique Narrative mode Stylistic device
Suspension of disbelief Symbolism Tone


Fable-Parable Fabliaux Fairy tale Flash story Folktale-Legend Hypertext Novel Novella
Play Poem Screenplay Short story List of narrative forms


Adventure Comic Crime Docufiction Epistolary Erotic Faction Fantasy Historical

Horror Magic realism Mystery Paranoid Philosophical Political Romance Saga Satire
Science Speculative Superhero Thriller Urban


Alternating person First-person Second-person Third-person (Limited Objective Omniscient

Subjective) Stream of consciousness Unreliable
Past tense Present tense Future tense




Audience Author Fiction writing Creative nonfiction Literary theory Narrative structure
Narratology Other narrative modes Rhetoric Storytelling
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