Tag Archives: word #11


Dilute (verb) – to make thinner or more liquid by admixture

Source: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dilute

From “You In America” by Amanda Ngozi Adichie

I came across this word while reading “You In America” by Amanda Ngozi Adichie. It appears around the end of the reading, as the author talks about how you let out your emotions in the shower, crying as you’re in it. It caught my interest because it’s a word I don’t hear quite often and didn’t know it’s meaning, so i’m curious as to how it ties in with the sentence and the author’s overall point.

“Later, in the shower, you started to cry, you watched the water dilute your tears and you didn’t know why you were crying.” (Adichie).

After reading the definition of the word I better understand the context of how the author was using it in that part of the text. As seen in the quote, the author is discribing how you would react in a sad situation like that.


Devour (verb) :  To eat up greedily or ravenously; devoured the turkey and mashed potatoes    To use up or destroy as if by eating; We are devouring the world’s resources.

The Shawl by Cynthia Ozick                                                                                                                          “And The time that Stella said “Aryan” it sounded to Rosa as is Stella had really said ‘Let us devour her’ ”

Rose had a daughter named Magda and her niece’s name was Stella, They were very hungry and they cant even step an inch from the line if they do the soldiers would shoot them. Therefore, Magla is a baby who is covered by the shawl and Stella is a very young girl who tries to survive and she knows that Magla won’t last long in this condition and she is jealous by how Magla comfortable covered by the shawl. Therefore, when Stella just says “Aryan” Rose hears is as “let us eat her” and gets scared to sacrifice her child.




Oblivion, noun: the condition or state of being forgotten or unknown; the state of being destroyed.

Source: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/oblivion

We encountered this word in the story The Shawl by Louise Erdrich. It’s used when the narrator talks about the challenges and hardships his people have endured, both from previous generations and from the current ones, and how the struggle of dealing with those pains can drive a person to ruin.

“Now, gradually, that term of despair has lifted somewhat and yielded up its survivors. But we still have sorrows that are passed to us from early generations, sorrows to handle in addition to our own, and cruelties lodged where we cannot forget them. We have the need to forget. We are always walking on oblivion’s edge.”


Project 2 Glossary Annotation:

  • Aped (verb) – to copy closely but often clumsily and ineptly

Source – https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/ape

From: “Quicksand” by Nella Larsen, Chapter 9 Page 80

“She hated white people with a deep and burning hatred, with the kind of hatred which, finding itself held insufficiently numerous groups, was capable someday, on some great provocation, of bursting into dangerously malignant flames. But she aped their clothes, their manners, and their gracious ways of living. While proclaiming loudly the undiluted good of all things Negro, she yet disliked the songs, the dances, and the softly blurred speech of the race. Toward these things, she showed only a disdainful contempt, tinged sometimes with a faint amusement. Like the despised people of the white race, she preferred Pavlova to Florence Mills, John McCormack to Taylor Gordon, Walter Hampden to Paul Robeson.”

In this passage, the author depicts Helga as someone who would adapt to a better lifestyle to be accepted by the society, but keep her traditional values. Even though Helga hates white people, she follows their fashion and lifestyle. Helga also prefers the music that the white people like. This shows that Helga is conflicted between the African-American culture and the lifestyle of white people.