* Site-Outage Notice: Our engineering elves will be tweaking the Shmoop site from Monday, December 22 10:00 PM PST to Tuesday, December 23 5:00 AM PST. The site will be unavailable during this time.
Dismiss
© 2014 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.

Literature Glossary

Don’t be an oxymoron. Know your literary terms.

Over 200 literary terms, Shmooped to perfection.

Trope

Definition:

Shmoop thought we knew what a trope was. After all, we spend all our free time trolling around on tvtropes.org. So when someone says trope, the first thing we think about are those common conventions that everyone knows. Here are some of our favorite tropes (according to the Shmoop and common-use definition):

But alas, Shmoopers, we've been duped. Our English teachers have betrayed us. Our faith in the literary world has shriveled to nothing.

And… we're over it.

A trope is basically another term for a figurative language. Yep, that's it. Nothin' fancy here. The term trope just means you're using words to mean something other than their literal meaning.

P.S. If you do want to get fancy, you can also call these topoi, plural for topos.