Figurative Language In Speak By Laurie Halse Anderson

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Macy Scharpf Chin Honors English 9, Period 4 23 January 2023 Past events can often define the actions someone takes and who they are in the present. If society takes the time to analyze these actions, individuals can figure out the feelings of one another in a certain moment. “Speak” by Laurie Halse Anderson delineates the thoughts and feelings of a teenage girl, Melinda, as she navigates the highs and lows of high school, while carrying the weight of a past traumatic event. In the passage from the book, “Speak”, author Laurie Halse Anderson uses different types of figurative language such as similes and metaphors, as well as repetition to reveal Melinda’s negative thoughts on her past and current feelings about high school. In the later part of the text, Anderson incorporates similes and metaphors to compare the …show more content…

Anderson closes the essay with a metaphor comparing the feeling of guilt and malaise Melinda has to “--a beast in my gut, I can hear it scraping away at the inside of my ribs” (Anderson). This is an example of a metaphor that compares Melinda’s unbearable weight she has in her stomach to an angry beast. It’s used to reveal Melinda’s negative thoughts towards an event that occurred in her past. With figurative language, Anderson explains how a specific conflict has affected Melinda in the present and how she must navigate the social challenges she faces in high school. She also feels like she has to hide away from everyone in her safe space, the closet, as no one will understand what went wrong. This is further portraying characterization as the reader learns her perspective on the ebb and flow of high school. Anderson then compares Melinda’s inability to speak as if she has “--some kind of spastic laryngitis” (Anderson). This is an example of a simile that reveals how Melinda feels about her inability to speak up. It compares her silence to the feeling of an infection in her throat. By using this simile, Anderson

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