coherence

coherence

“A principle demanding that the parts of any composition be so arranged that the meaning of the whole may be immediately clear and intelligible. Words, phrases, clauses within the sentence; and sentences, paragraphs, and chapters in larger pieces of writing are the units that, by their progressive and logical arrangement, make for coherence or, contrariwise, by illogical arrangement, result in incoherence. Literature has no need, however, of unilateral coherence in all its particulars. Occasional incoherence—or even unsuitable coherence—may perfectly register uncertainty, anxiety, terror, confusion, illness, or other common states” (Source: Harmon & Holman,  102).

Lack of coherence marks much postmodern fiction.


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