Entertainment / Literature / Ambiguity: In common conversation, ambiguity is a negative term applied to a vague or equivocal expression when precision would be more useful. Sometimes, however, intentional ambiguity in literature can be a powerful device, leaving something undetermined in order to open up multiple possible meanings. When we refer to literary ambiguity, we refer to any wording, action, or symbol that can be read in divergent ways. As William Empson put it, ambiguity is 'any verbal nuance, however slight, which gives room for alternative reactions to the same piece of language' (qtd. In Deutsch 11).

Other Words for Ambiguity

Ambiguity Noun Synonyms: equivocalness, equivocacy, amphibology or amphiboly, vagueness, indistinctness, uncertainty, indefiniteness, imprecision, inconclusiveness


Science / Chemistry / Mistake: A mistake is a measurement which is known to be incorrect due to carelessness, accidents, or the ineptitude of the experimenter. It's important to distinguish mistakes from errors: mistakes can be avo MORE


Entertainment / Literature / Volitive: A verb form that expresses a wish, command, or the speaker's will. In many languages, an identical verb form is used for both the intentive (which expresses intention) and the volitive.In English verb MORE

Double Entendre

Entertainment / Literature / Double Entendre: (French, 'double meaning') The deliberate use of ambiguity in a phrase or image--especially involving sexual or humorous meanings. MORE