Pathetic Fallacy

Definition:
Pathetic fallacy is a type of literary device whereby the author ascribes the human feelings of one or more of his or her characters to nonhuman objects or nature or phenomena. It is a type of personification, and is known to occur more by accident and less on purpose.

Example:
The softly whistling teapot informed him it was time for breakfast.

4 thoughts on “Pathetic Fallacy”

  1. I’m not so sure what the exact difference is between pathetic fallacy and personification. Could someone clarify?

  2. So Pathetic Fallacy is giving an object human emotions, like Friendly Sun. What’s it called when the surroundings seem to reflect some other part of the plot? For example, a storm breaking out during a murder scene.

    1. Not quite, what you are describing there is personification, where you give objects human emotions or make them do something like “the sun smiled”. Pathetic fallacy is in fact using weather to set the tone/setting of the scene or text.

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