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Elements of Literature Basics

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Sarah Martin

on 27 July 2013

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Transcript of Elements of Literature Basics

Elements of Literature Basics
Characters reflects the personality of the protagonist and other related characters. The method of conveying information about characters in art is called characterization. Characters can be fictional or based on real, historical entities. They can be human, supernatural, mythical, divine, animal or personifications of an abstraction. There are round characters, flat characters, stereotypical stock characters, etc.
A struggle or problem a character must overcome. The plot becomes interesting and intriguing when it has its share of inbuilt conflict and twists. Conflict can be internal conflict or external. (Man vs. Man, Man vs. Self, Man vs. Nature, Man vs. Society)
Who is telling the story? First-person point = the main character is telling the story, third-person point of view = the narrator is telling the story. A novel can be written in the first-person narrative, third-person narrative, omniscient point of view, limited omniscient point of view, stream of consciousness and objective point of view.

Elements of Literature
Elements of literature denote the things that are used to make up a work. There are different types and forms of literature. They are novel, drama, poetry, biography, non-fictional prose, essay, epic and short story. To complete a piece, a writer, dramatist or a novelist uses certain elements like plot, character, theme, etc. The different types of literature have many elements in common. However, elements of fiction and elements of drama differ from elements of poetry. These are the basics.
A series of incidents, ideas or events. The story of the novel progresses through various plots and conflicts. Plots of dramas are divided into "Acts" and "Scenes". Drama has five essential parts. These are represented in Freytag's Pyramid (Plot Pyramid) and can also be applied to short stories:
Freytag's Plot Pyramid
The central idea or lesson about life that a story conveys. It reflects innocence, experience, life, death, reality, fate, madness, sanity, love, society, individual, etc. Thus, it reflects the society as a whole.
Where and when a story takes place; the geographical location of the story, time period, daily lifestyle of the characters and climate of the story.
The way the author uses language or diction to tell the story. It is used to portray the thoughts, emotions and feelings of the characters and provides clues to their background and personalities. Diction also helps in advancing the plot.
The way a person feels about an idea/concept, event, or another person can be quickly determined through facial expressions, gestures and in the tone of voice used. In literature an author sets the tone through words. Diction and syntax often dictate what the author's (or character's) attitude toward his subject is at the time. Using imagery in a poem is helpful to develop a poem's tone.
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