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(sĭnĕk`dəkē), figure of speech, a species of metaphormetaphor
[Gr.,=transfer], in rhetoric, a figure of speech in which one class of things is referred to as if it belonged to another class. Whereas a simile states that A is like B, a metaphor states that A is B or substitutes B for A.
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, in which a part of a person or thing is used to designate the whole—thus, "The house was built by 40 hands" for "The house was built by 20 people." See metonymymetonymy
, figure of speech in which an attribute of a thing or something closely related to it is substituted for the thing itself. Thus, "sweat" can mean "hard labor," and "Capitol Hill" represents the U.S. Congress.
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The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.



a figure of speech and variant of metonymy by which the whole is made known by means of a part. There are two types of synecdoche. In the first, the whole is represented by a, part, which replaces the whole. For example, “Hey, beard! how can I get from here to Pliushkin’s?” (N. Gogol). Here the meanings of “man with a beard,” “bearded one” (“villein”), and “beard” are combined. In the second type of synecdoche, one grammatical number is used instead of the other: “And until dawn the Frenchman [the French] could be heard rejoicing” (M. Iu. Lermontov).

The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
References in periodicals archive ?
This is about synecdoche (si-NEK-duh-kee), a rather complex figure of speech by which a part is put for the whole, the whole for a part, the species for the genus, the genus for the species or the name of the material for the thing made.
Ransom, invested in the autonomy of the work of art, thus argued that "synecdoche is a way of indicating the irreducibility of the object as a whole by citing some perfectly intractable part." (45) Burke likewise suggested that "the well-formed work of art is internally synecdochic." (46) Lurking behind these statements, however, was another synecdoche, which was no longer the part of the poem in relation to the whole, but now the part of world (the poem) in relation to the whole--for Ransom, the lyric alone stood as the poet's perfect "microcosm." (47) Consequently, the double substitution enabled a direct relation between poetic "texture" (the details of the literary text) and world-sized structures ("the worlds body" (48)) to replace sociohistorical context.
The title of his directorial debut takes the cake, and tells you about the kind of film that Synecdoche, New York wants to be.
The scripts that I was trying to get going were no less eccentric than 'Synecdoche,'" Kaufman says, but the gatekeepers had gotten gun-shy.
that if you can't understand what's going on first time round, then it's probably all a bit too Synecdoche, New York
Deignan (2005) stated that a synecdoche using "part of an entity to stand for the whole entity".
Her other film credits have included The Station Agent, Synecdoche, New York, Shutter Island, Take This Waltz and Oz the Great and Powerful.
SYNECDOCHE, NEW YORK BBC2, 11.05pm A neurotic playwright suffering a series of worrying physical ailments takes on a grand project - building a replica of New York in a warehouse for a play based on his own life.
SYNECDOCHE, NEW YORK (BBC Two, Friday, 11.05pm) THE late Philip Seymour Hoffman stars as a neurotic theatre director who, suffering from a variety of ailments and a failing marriage, wins a prestigious grant and uses it to finance a wildly ambitious project - a play based on his own life.
FRIDAY SYNECDOCHE, NEW YORK BBC2 11.05PM The late Philip Seymour Hoffman stars as a troubled theatre director in this drama.
BBC2's Synecdoche, New York (Friday, 11.05pm) is more marginal.
Ripley,'' "Almost Famous,'' "Mission Impossible III,'' the Oscar-winning "Capote,'' "Before the Devil Knows You're Dead,'' "Charlie Wilson's War,'' "Doubt,'' "The Savages,'' "Moneyball,'' "Jack Goes Boating,'' "The Hunger Games,'' "Synecdoche, New York,'' "A Late Quartet,'' "Punch-Drunk Love,'' "Happiness,'' "Scent of a Woman,'' "Pirate Radio'' and on and on.