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Analyzing Character Development

Four methods of characterization
by

Laura Smylie

on 18 March 2013

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Transcript of Analyzing Character Development

The Four Methods of Characterization Characterize is a verb that means to describe a character.

*Please open your InterActive Reader & Writer workbook to page 52* There are two different forms of characterization.
*Direct
*Indirect The direct form:
*The writer may make direct comments about a character's personality or nature through the voice of the narrator. Example:
"Hazel had perfectly average intelligence, which meant she couldn't think about anything except in short bursts" (Vonnegut 12-13). More often, though, you will find out about characters indirectly.
There are three types of indirect characterization that the writer may describe:
*A character's physical appearance
*A character's own actions, thoughts, and speech
*Other character's reactions to, thoughts, and comments about the character Example of physical appearance (indirect):
"...the H-G men required that he wear at all times a red rubber ball for a nose, keep his eyebrows shaved off, and cover his even white teeth with black caps at snaggle-tooth random" (Vonnegut 122-124). Example of character's thoughts, speech, and actions (indirect):

"'Even as I stand here--' he bellowed, 'crippled, hobbled, sickened-- I am a greater ruler than any man who ever lived! Now watch me become what I can become!' Harrison tore the straps of his handicap harness like wet tissue paper..." (Vonnegut 142-145). Example of other character's reactions/comments of the character (indirect):

"...'has just escaped from jail, where he was held on suspicion of plotting to overthrow the government. He is a genius and an athlete, is under-handicapped, and should be regarded as extremely dangerous" (Vonnegut 104-107). Character Traits:
-Physical
-Intellectual
-Personality
*Moods and emotions are not typically considered traits because they fluctuate often. Give Me Thumbs Up If You Can.... 1) Recall the four methods of characterization.
2) Distinguish between direct and indirect characterization.
3) Identify various examples of the four methods of characterization. What method of characterization is this?
"I had a long walk home and no company, but I usually lone it anyway, for no reason except that I like to watch movies undisturbed so I can get in to them and live them with the actors" (Hinton 1-2). Which method of characterization is this? Is it more than one?

"She opened her eyes and frowned across the man opposite her. A tall man with a brown face, light eyes set rather close together and an arrogant almost cruel mouth.
She thought to herself:
"I bet he's been to some interesting parts of the world and seen some interesting things..." (Christie 5). Which method of characterization is this?
" Stanley was not a bad kid. He was innocent of the crime for which he was convicted. He'd just been in the wrong place at the wrong time" (Sachar 7). Works Cited:

Christie, Agatha. And Then There Were None. New York: St. Martin's Press, 2001. 5. Print.

Hinton, S E. The Outsiders. New York: The Penguin Group, 1997. 1-2. Print.

Sachar, Louis. Holes. New York: Scholastic Inc., 1998. 7. Print.

Van Gogh, Vincent. Starry night. 1889. Web. 3 Sept. 2011. <http://www.vangoghgallery.com/painting/starryindex.html>.

Vonnegut, Kurt. "Harrison Bergeron." Louisiana: McDougal Littell Literature. Ed. Janet Allen, Arthur N. Applebee, Jim Burke, Douglas Carnine,
and Yvette Jackson. Evanston: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, 2008. 33-43. Print. The Character Like real people, characters display certain qualities or character traits; they
develop and change over time; and they usually have motivations, or reasons
for their behaviors. Main characters are the most important characters in literary works. Generally, the plot of a short story focuses on one main character, but a novel may have several main characters. Minor characters:
less prominent characters in a literary work.
support the plot.
help carry out the action of the story and help the reader learn more about the major characters. Dynamic characters:
undergo important changes as a plot unfolds.
The changes occur because of his/her actions & experiences in the story.
The change is usually internal & may be good or bad.
Main characters are usually, BUT NOT ALWAYS, dynamic. Static characters
Remain the same throughout a story.
The character may experience events and have interactions with other characters, but he/she is not changed because of them. Round characters:
are complex and highly developed
have a variety of traits and different sides to his/her personality.
tend to display strengths, weaknesses, and a full range of emotions. The writer provides enough detail for the reader to understand their feelings & emotions. Flat characters:
are not highly developed.
one-sided character: he or she usually has one outstanding trait, characteristic, or role.
Exist mainly to advance the plot; display only the traits needed for their limited roles. Minor characters are USUALLY flat.
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