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Phonology is the framework that is concerned with sound.  In some areas, we will want to make precise comments about sounds used (e.g. in describing children’s speech or accents), but often in textual analysis, we’re looking at effects created by sound patterns.  

It’s really important to think specifically about sounds (phonemes) rather than letters: I often see students claiming that, for example, there is alliteration in “crispy chocolate” when the sounds are clearly entirely different.

Key phonological terms:

alliteration, assonance, rhyme

onomatopoeia

puns using homophones or collocational clashes

plosive sounds: pin, ball, ten, dog, car, girl

fricative sounds: see, zoo, she, leisure, thin, though, fat, van

Ways to use phonological knowledge:

Phonology