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1. a) Define hyperbole and understatement.
b) Which word do you think best describes this cartoon?

2. Editorial cartoonists often use humor to make light of issues that aggravate people. One of the types of humor they use is irony. Irony is defined when the opposite of what you expect to happen occurs. Describe the irony of Stephan Pastis’ cartoon.

3. Do you agree with the cartoonist’s assertion about technology? Explain your answer.

Scroll down to the bottom of the page for the answers.

Cartoon by Stephan Pastis


1. a)
hyperbole – an exaggeration of ideas for the sake of emphasis. (literarydevices .net)
Hyperbole is a figure of speech in which an author or speaker purposely and obviously exaggerates to an extreme. It is used for emphasis or as a way of making a description more creative and humorous. It is important to note that hyperbole is not meant to be taken literally; the audience knows it’s an exaggeration. (literaryterms .net)

understatement – An understatement is a figure of speech employed by writers or speakers to intentionally make a situation seem less important than it really is. (literarydevices .net)
Understatement is when a writer presents a situation or thing as if it is less important or serious than it is in reality. It describes something with less strength than would be expected. (literaryterms .net)

b) Answer varies, depending on your point view.

2. The first half of the cartoon shows people in meaningful pursuits in their spare time. Technology was supposed to make life easier and give us even more free time. You expect “A day in the life 2017” to show people with more time to pursue meaningful activities. Instead, they have replaced meaningful pursuits with time wasting activities.

3. Opinion question. Answers vary.