Satire

From The Bedford Glossary of Critical and Literacy Terms. ~ A literacy genre that uses irony, wit, and sometimes sarcasm to expose humanity's vices and foibles, giving impetus to change or reform through ridicule.

• satire uses comic elements; it may generate laughter, but essentially has a moral purpose. (Note: Comedy's sole purpose is to entertain and amuse.)

• satire is focused on characteristics that can be changed.

Satire has two types:

1. Direct: This uses a first person narrator who either directly addresses the reader or another character in a work (called adversaries).

• Horation: A formal satire that pokes fun at human foibles with a witty, even indulgent tone. Named for Roman satirist Horace, who souught "to laugh people out of their vices and follies".

•Juvenalian: A formal satire characterized by harshness and pointed realism that denounces human vice and error in solemn tones. Named for Roman satirist Juvenal, noted for his dignified attacks on vice which seek to envoke contempt or indignation from the reader.

2. Indirect: The satire effect is achieved through models of presentation and representation. (Authors may make points through exaggeration and nonsequitar. Sometimes a point is made by what is not said rather than by what is said).

The above is from my notes in Honors English class my Senior year, 2004.

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