Q:

What does the literary device foreshadowing mean?

A:

Quick Answer

Foreshadowing refers to dropping hints in a story about what happens later on in the book. This means that foreshadowing usually happens early on in a story such as in the first chapter.

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Full Answer

Foreshadowing can be done in different ways. For example, a writer can drop hints in dialogue. An example is in the movie "The Dark Knight" where Harvey Dent has a line about how you either die a hero or live long enough to see yourself become the villain. This is a direct foreshadowing of what happens later on in the movie. Another example of foreshadowing occurs in mystery novels. These clues are more overt because they are in some cases actual physical clues. In contrast, foreshadowing in stories that employ mystery elements is often misleading on purpose. Characters might act in a suspicious way in order to get readers to think that the character is responsible for the misdeeds of the book. An example of this is in the "Harry Potter" series, in which Snape acts suspiciously, especially in the first novel, but has an involvement in the story that is not as clear-cut as it would initially seem. Generally, foreshadowing is a way to control reader expectations about what’s going to happen next.

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Related Questions

  • Q:

    What is an example of foreshadowing?

    A:

    An example of foreshadowing occurs in “Romeo and Juliet” when Romeo’s friend Benvolio advises him to find a new love to cure the “rank poison” of an old infatuation, foreshadowing Romeo’s eventual death by poison. Foreshadowing is a technique through which the author hints at later events in a story.

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  • Q:

    What is foreshadowing in short stories?

    A:

    Foreshadowing is presenting an omen or sign of a future event to let readers know something is going to happen. This literary device allows the writer to reveal just enough information about an event to keep the reader interested in the storyline.

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  • Q:

    What is a literary symbol?

    A:

    A literary symbol is usually an object that represents an idea that is significantly deeper, although it is sometimes a word, event or deed. One example is a rose, usually taken as a symbol of passion or romantic love.

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  • Q:

    What are literary elements?

    A:

    Literary elements are characteristics common to both oral and written stories. The elements are intrinsic parts of literature, not something an author simply decides to utilize.

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