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Specific language covers three ranges of styles known as concrete words abstractwords and general language Specific language refers to objects or conditions that can beperceived or imagined Concrete words describe qualities of immediate perception and abstractwords refer to broader less palpable qualities diction refers to qualities that are rarefied andtheoretical General language signifies a broad classes of persons objects and phenomena Inpractice poems that use specific and concrete words tend to be visually familiar and compelling But by contrast poems using general and abstract words tend to be detached and sharpregularly dealing with universal questions or emotions Polking Writing A to Z pg 124 Allwriting of any sort has to be done in one of these 3 types of language concrete abstract orgeneral and so they are very important to fictional writing Concrete nouns name things that we can perceive throughout our senses for example your friend Canada the brain If you say Ice cream is cold the word cold is concretebecause it describes a condition that you can feel just as you can taste ice creams sweetnessand feel its creamy texture in your mouth The time it takes to understand a sentence isgenerally shorter when the sentence is concrete rather than abstract Klee Eysenck 1973 People respond faster to concrete than to abstract sentences in meaning of classification tasksin which meaningful and abnormal sentences must be refined which requires a judgment of thetruth value of a sentence Holmes Langford 1976 It has also generally been found thatsubjects both encode and retrieve concrete words and sentences faster and more completelyAbstract nouns name qualities friendship heroism or concepts the provincemanagement If we describe ice cream as good we are abstract because good is far removedfrom ice cream itself and reveals no descriptive information about it A large number of thingsmay be good just as they may be bad fine cool excellent and so on The context-availability model suggests that abstract words are more difficult
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