Glossary Term - Glossary Term- Allusion

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Glossary Term- Allusion defines the term allusion as “a passing or casual reference; an incidental mention of something, either directly or by implication”. In other words, an allusion is a reference in literature to other literary works or people, places, or things, in the past that hold historical significance. Allusions are used to add subtle meanings to a piece and also are able to change the tone or point of view towards a certain subject. Almost everything produced from literature to movies contains allusions. It is the authors way of acknowledging his own influences as well as giving the piece a second, deeper level of content. If we look at Walden, by Henry David Thoreau, we can see a very obvious allusion as he references to the Greek giant Anteaus. “They [the beans] attached me to the earth, and so I got strength like Anteaus.” (Thoreau, 1849). Anteaus was the child of Poseidon and Gaia. He would challenge men to wrestling matches and after he won, would collect their skulls to build a temple for his father. He was never defeated because he had infinite strength as long as he was in contact with the Earth. Thoreau feels very at home in the wilderness; he feels at peace, he understands “life” better, and is able to obtain everything he needs from the forest. This allusion is a way that Thoreau describes his deep connection to the forest just as Antaeus did, but without directly saying it.
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Glossary Term - Glossary Term- Allusion

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