© 2016 Shmoop University, Inc. All rights reserved.
Don’t be an oxymoron. Know your literary terms.
Select A Tag
Over 200 literary terms, Shmooped to perfection.
Suspension Of Disbelief
We can think of suspension of disbelief as putting aside our doubt or skepticism for the sake of a good story—even if that story has crazy fantastic stuff in it like
flying monkeys or talking cars. Romantic poet Samuel Taylor Coleridge cooked up the idea of a "willing suspension of disbelief" in his 1815 , where he referred to it as "poetic faith." Biographia Literaria
Suspension of disbelief is especially important when reading in genres like
Magical Realism, Gothic Literature, Science Fiction, or Fantasy, where some weird stuff is bound to go down.
Example? Yes, we know that vampires don't exist, but the
series is still a guilty pleasure, and we know you're willing to dive in headfirst and immerse yourself in their Twilight supernatural world.