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Co-author of East of Tiffany's, 13 short stories of a Latino immigrant's success in USA; a journey from West Harlem to Sutton Place and Park Avenue. Check out the reviews in Amazon.com and in Barnes and Noble.

on KINDLE on NOOK

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Titanes de la Filosofia

Professor Guerrero's Blog: Zeugma - A Rhetorical Tool Used by Master Writers Professor Guerrero's Blog: Book Reviews, Human Interest Articles, Accounting Lessons, and Writing Techniques

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All my books are now in NOOK

Ideas About the Novel is a prophetic book that all writers must own.

Ideas About the Novel by Ortega y Gasset - my translation $0.99


Next to Cervantes, Benito Perez Galdos is the most beloved Spanish writer of all times.

Torquemada at the Stake by Perez Galdos- my translation $0.99

Lazarillo of Tormes - my translation $0.99
Read it in contemporary English -- No Thous, Thees, or King James' Bible language. Transliterated into easy language for enjoyable reading pleasure. Because The Lazarillo of Tormes pointed a new direction, European and American literature benefited with titles that today are considered classics: Cervantes’ Rinconete and Cortadillo; Daniel Defoe’s Moll Flanders, Henry Fielding’s Tom Jones and Joseph Andrews; Tobias Smollett’s Roderick Random, and Peregrine Pickle; Voltaire’s Candide; Charles Dickens’ David Copperfield. And many others to include American works ranging from Mark Twain to Saul Bellow.

Dehumanization of Art by Ortega y Gasset - my translation $0.99
The Dehumanization of Art— is now a constant in music, literature, aesthetics, and philosophy, having come to mean that in post-modern times human-shaped mimesis (representation of the human) is irrelevant to art. According to Ortega, the arts don't have to tell a human story; art should deal with its own forms—and not with the human form.

Sentence Openers
How writers open their sentences makes prose agile, interesting, and athletic. This e-book teaches how to break the pattern Subject-verb-object--and discard openings that begin with nouns, articles, and pronouns.

East of Tiffany's - bestseller $5
With the city as its backdrop "East of Tiffany's" is filled with earnest tales of love, loss, faith, success and morality. While business terminology is interwoven throughout these short stories, it's not business lessons that I take away with me, but life lessons. The circumstances and the characters' profound humanity are relatable despite their zip code . "Luke, Postmodern Man" offers a new vista into faith, suffering, and love of neighbor. Way after you read this book you'll find yourself thinking about the various characters throughout the series of stories and will find solace in their unwavering faith. The narrators' ability to reflect on their hardships with such serenity is inspiring.



My writing was as flat as a sidewalk. And then I downloaded ...

Mary Duffy's Toolbox for Writers
After I purchased Mary's e-book I started to get 'A's in my essays and term papers! Every page is filled with great writing tips, training lessons, and wonderful useful writing skills! Not only do I write essays for college, but also short stories!
--IVONNIE Indrawan
College student
Sentence Openers on KINDLE

Sentence Openers on NOOK













All my books are now in KINDLE


Ideas About the Novel by Ortega y Gasset - my translation $0.99
Torquemada at the Stake by Perez Galdos- my translation $0.99
Lazarillo of Tormes - my translation $0.99
Dehumanization of Art by Ortega y Gasset - my translation $0.99
Sentence Openers
East of Tiffany's - bestseller $5


The most beloved short story from Spanish literature
All my books are in NOOK $0.99 or in Amazon KINDLE $0.99








All my books are now in NOOK

Ideas About the Novel is a prophetic book that all writers must own.
Ideas About the Novel by Ortega y Gasset - my translation $0.99

Next to Cervantes, Benito Perez Galdos is the most beloved Spanish writer of all times.

Torquemada at the Stake by Perez Galdos- my translation $0.99

Lazarillo of Tormes - my translation $0.99
Read it in contemporary English -- No Thous, Thees, or King James' Bible language.

Dehumanization of Art by Ortega y Gasset - my translation $0.99
The Dehumanization of Art— is now a constant in music, literature, aesthetics, and philosophy, having come to mean that in post-modern times human-shaped mimesis (representation of the human) is irrelevant to art.

Sentence Openers
How writers open their sentences makes prose agile, interesting, and athletic.

East of Tiffany's - bestseller $5
With the city as its backdrop "East of Tiffany's" is filled with earnest tales of love, loss, faith, success and morality.



My writing was as flat as a sidewalk. And then I downloaded ...

Mary Duffy's Toolbox for Writers
After I purchased Mary's e-book I started to get 'A's in my essays and term papers!
--Ivonnie Indrawan
College student
Sentence Openers on KINDLE

Sentence Openers on NOOK





Available in KINDLE $0.99


Available in KINDLE $0.99

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Zeugma - A Rhetorical Tool Used by Master Writers

What is a Zeugma?

Zeugma is a rhetorical device where a single word is made to refer to two or more words in a sentence, often playing on the words’ literal and metaphorical meanings.
Smiling with a crooked smile that did little to hide his crooked intentions and crooked teeth, he said “Trust me.”
The verb ‘To hide’ controls two other words: intentions and teeth. But what is worthy of note in this zeugma is the juxtaposition of an abstract noun (intentions) to a concrete one (teeth).
Now, however, sloth triumphs over diligence, idleness over work, vice over virtue, arrogance over valor, and theory over the practice of arms which lived and shone only in the Golden Age and in the time of the knights errant (Cervantes 465).
I found her enchanted, transformed from a princess into a peasant, from beautiful to ugly, from an angel into a devil, from fragrant into foul-smelling, from well spoken into rustic, from serene into skittish, from light into darkness, and, finally from Dulcinea of Toboso into a lowborn farmgirl from Sayago (Cervantes 671).
With this simple device Cervantes adds delight and color to the narrative—by means of antithesis—at the same time that cultivates the reader’s attentiveness, forcing him to put two and two together to grasp the intended meaning.

Zeugmas used in a humorous vein:

Lenox said, “Hog, the only thing you save is your breath when you eat.”
After two unsuccessful marriages, I find myself keeping my guard up, along with my underpants (Grafton, C is for Corpse 15).
In Shakespeare’s The Merchant of Venice, we note Portia’s saucy speech:
How oddly he is suited [outfitted]! I think he bought his doublet in Italy, his round hose in France, his bonnet in Germany, and his behavior everywhere. (Act I, scene ii, line 72-72).
Zeugmas used to set the tone of a book, as in the Vicar of Wakefield:
From this motive, I had scarce taken orders a year before I began to think seriously of matrimony, and chose my wife as she did her wedding gown, not for a fine glossy surface, but such qualities as would wear well (Goldsmith 4).

Zeugmas in Dialogue:

“Eliot, Michael’s untimely departure leaves us with a space both in our house and in our hearts” (Segal 112). “To our beloved new leader Jason Gilbert, ace racket-man and incomparable ass-man. May his shots in court drop as often as his shorts in bed” (Segal 143).
The governing word may be a noun as well as a verb, as we see in the following examples from Harper Lee’s To Kill a Mockingbird, where the controlling word is the noun ‘hand’:
Calpurnia was something else again. She was all angles and bones; she was nearsighted; she squinted; her hand was wide as a bed slat and twice as hard (7).
and the controlling word is the verb ‘lost’ in the following example:
Mrs. Radley had been beautiful until she married Mr. Radley and lost all her money. She also lost most of her teeth, her hair, and her right forefinger (Dill’s contribution) (39).
From the above examples we infer that zeugmas may be employed to give the narration an air of lighthearted humor or banter. Just as the fool in Shakespearean dramas breaks the solemnity of the scene with parody and foolery, so does Cervantes in Don Quijote:
At this moment a gelder of hogs happened to arrive at the inn, and as he arrived he blew his reed pipe four or five times, which confirmed for Don Quixote that he was in a famous castle where they were entertaining him with music, and that the cod was trout, the bread soft and white, the prostitutes ladies, the innkeeper the castellan of the castle, and that his decision to sally forth had been a good one (Cervantes 29).
When zeugmas join concrete and abstract nouns, the combinations can stir up the reader’s emotions. Tim O’Brien’s novel The Things They Carried is replete with this type of zeugmas:
As a hedge against bad times, however, Kiowa also carried his grandmother’s distrust of the white man, his grandfather’s old hunting hatchet (3). He carried a strobe light and the responsibility for the lives of his men (5). But Ted Lavender, who was scared, carried 34 rounds when he was shot and killed outside Than Khe, and he went down under an exceptional burden, more than 20 pounds of ammunition, plus the flak jacket and helmet and rations and water and toilet paper and tranquilizers and all the rest, plus the unweighed fear (6).
See how Gabriel Garcia Marquez creates atmospheric tension with the use of one governing verb, ‘listening’:
He got dressed by feel, listening in the dark to his brother’s calm breathing, the dry cough of his father in the next room, the asthma of the hens in the courtyard, the buzz of the mosquitoes, the beating of his heart, and the inordinate bustle of a world that he had not noticed until then, and he went out in the sleeping street (Garcia Marquez, One Hundred Years of Solitude 27).
We haven’t exhausted the topic, for there are other zeugma derivatives that depend on what slot of the sentence the zeugma is placed in; but their sophistication can cause ambiguity and confusion; therefore we do not recommend their use.

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Professor Guerrero's Blog

Co-author of East of Tiffany's, 13 short stories that will warm your heart - See 101 reviews in Amazon.com and 37 in Barnes and Noble.

on KINDLE on NOOK

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