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Elements of Prose


Elements of Prose a.k.a.- The parts of a story Prose There are 2 types of writing: prose- anything that is NOT poetry or plays poetry Prose is divided into 2 ... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: Elements of Prose

Elements of Prose
  • a.k.a.- The parts of a story

  • There are 2 types of writing
  • prose- anything that is NOT poetry or plays
  • poetry
  • Prose is divided into 2 categories
  • short story
  • novel

Short Story
  • Definition Fictional story that can be read in
    one sitting.
  • Example A Rose for Emily, The Cask of
    Amontillado, or The Most Dangerous Game

  • Definition A long prose narrative that must be
    read in many sittings.
  • Example To Kill a Mockingbird, The Scarlet
    Letter, or The Great Gatsby

Elements of Prose
  • Plot
  • Character
  • Setting
  • Point of View
  • Theme
  • Irony
  • Symbol

  • The framework or skeleton of the story
  • A series of related events that are linked

What Makes Up Plot?
  • Basic Situation (Exposition)
  • Tells the audience who the characters are and
    introduces the conflict
  • Example Every Who Down in Who-villeLiked
  • a lot...

What Makes Up Plot?
  • 2. Rising Action
  • - Complications that arise when the characters
    take steps to resolve their conflicts

But the Grinch,Who lived just North of
Who-ville,Did NOT! The Grinch hated Christmas!
The whole Christmas season!Now, please don't ask
why. No one quite knows the reason.
What Makes Up Plot?
Example And the Grinch, with his grinch-feet
ice-cold in the snow,Stood puzzling and
puzzling "How could it be so?It came without
ribbons! It came without tags!"It came without
packages, boxes or bags!"And he puzzled three
hours, till his puzzler was sore.Then the
Grinch thought of something he hadn't
before!"Maybe Christmas," he thought, "doesn't
come from a store."Maybe Christmas...perhaps...me
ans a little bit more!"
  • Climax Most exciting or suspenseful moment when
    something happens to determine the outcome of the

What Makes Up Plot?
  • Example
  • Falling Action
  • The conflict is in the process of being resolved
    or unraveled

And what happened then...?Well...in Who-ville
they sayThat the Grinch's small heartGrew three
sizes that day!
What Makes Up Plot?
  • Resolution (Denouement) or Untying the knot
  • When the storys problem/conflict is resolved and
    the story ends
  • Endings may be happy or tragic

Example He whizzed with his load through the
bright morning lightAnd he brought back the
toys! And the food for the feast!And he......HE
HIMSELF...!The Grinch carved the roast beast!
Freytags Pyramid
  • Gustav Freytag was a Nineteenth Century German
    novelist who saw common patterns in the plots of
    stories and novels and developed a diagram to
    analyze them. He diagrammed a story's plot using
    a pyramid like the one shown here

Character Revealing Human Nature
  • Character- A person or being in a story that
    performs the action of the plot.
  • Characterization The process of revealing the
    personality of a character in a story.

Steps to the Characterization Process
  • A writer can reveal a character in the following
  • Letting up hear the character speak
  • Describing how the character looks dresses
  • Letting us listen to the characters inner
    thoughts and feelings
  • Revealing what other characters in the story
    think or say about the character
  • Showing us what the character does how he or
    she acts
  • These call on the reader to take the information
    he or she is given to interpret for
    himself/herself the kind of character he or she
    is reading about. This is called

Steps to the Characterization Process
  • Telling us directly what the characters
    personality is like cruel, sneaky, brace, etc.
  • Ex. Youre a mean one, Mr. Grinch

Types of Characters
  • Dynamic Character The character changes as a
    result of the action of the story.
  • Example- Ebenezer Scrooge, the Grinch
  • Static Character The character does not change
    much in the course of the story.
  • Example- Brutus (Julius Caesar)
  • Mama Younger (A Raisin in the Sun)

Types of Characters
  • Protagonist The main character of the story.
  • Can be good or evil
  • Antagonist The character or force that comes
    into conflict with the protagonist
  • Can be another person, an animal, a force of
    nature, society, the characters own conscience,

  • Defintion The time and location in which the
    story takes place

  • Purpose of Setting
  • Gives background information
  • Provides conflict
  • Man vs. Nature, Man vs. Society
  • Can reveal a lot about someones character
  • Provides mood or atmosphere
  • Mood- the feeling WE get when we read a story
  • Can paint images for the reader
  • - Images words that call forth the 5 senses

  • Definition The insight about human life that is
    revealed in a literary work. The golden thread
    woven throughout the story.
  • -The theme is what the author is saying through
    the story (its a deeper truth about reality)
  • - The plot how he says it it is the story he
    uses to get this point across

Point of View
  • Definition The direction from which the writer
    has chosen to tell the story

There are 3 Points of View
  • First Person One of the characters tells the
    story talks directly to the reader
  • Uses the pronoun I, me, we, or us
  • Third Person Limited The narrator will focus on
    the thoughts feelings of just one character
  • - Reader experiences the events of the story
    through the memory and senses of only one

There are 3 Points of View
  • Third-Person Omniscient- All-knowing
  • - An all-knowing narrator who refers to all the
    characters as he and she. Knows the thoughts
    and feelings of ALL of the characters.
  • The narrator is not necessarily the storys

  • Definition- It exists when a character is
    struggling with something or someone
  • Could be a number of things
  • Another person, an animal,
  • an inanimate object- a rock, the weather
  • The characters own personality

External Conflict
  • External Conflict- Caused by something OUTSIDE
    the character
  • Example an another character, a river, weather,
  • Man vs. Man, Man vs. Nature, Man vs. Society

Internal Conflict
  • Internal Conflict- Character struggles with some
    personal quality that is causing trouble
  • Example vanity, pride, selfishness, grief
  • Man vs. Self

  • Definition Clues about what is going to happen
    as the story unfolds

  • Definition Anxiety WE feel about what is going
    to happen next in the story

  • Definition The imitation of a work of
    literature, art, or music for amusement or

  • Definition A kind of writing that ridicules
    human weakness, vice, or folly in order to bring
    about social reform.
  • Example Political cartoons, A Modest Proposal

  • Definition An unexpected twist in a story
  • 3 Types of Irony
  • Verbal Someone says one thing but means another
  • - also known as sarcasm

-Example If a woman walks into a job interview
and she is sloppily dressed with only two teeth
in her head and the interview says, You have a
beautiful smile!
  • 2. Situational When a reader expects one
    thing to happen and the opposite occurs
  • Example- Everyone knows the sad irony in Richard
    Cory. Why would someone so successful and rich
    be so unhappy as to kill himself? In a
    wonderfully ironic letter, George Bernard Shaw
    celebrates his mothers death and cremation.
    Charles Dickens character
    Mr. McChoakumchild is anything but a

  • 3. Dramatic When the character in a play
    thinks one thing is true, but the audience knows
    better. The audience has inside information that
    a character does not.
  • - This information usually comes in the form of
    an aside or a soliloquy.
  • - Example In Romeo and Juliet, Romeo says that
    his grave is like to be his wedding bed.
    Little does he know that his marriage will be the
    cause of his untimely death. We as an audience
    knows because we heard the prologue at the
    beginning of the play.

  • Definition A character stands alone on stage
    and addresses the world (audience), giving voice
    to his innermost thoughts and feelings.
  • - Example

To-morrow, and to-morrow, and to-morrow,Creeps
in this petty pace from day to day,To the last
syllable of recorded timeAnd all our yesterdays
have lighted foolsThe way to dusty death. Out,
out, brief candle!Life's but a walking shadow, a
poor playerThat struts and frets his hour upon
the stageAnd then is heard no more. It is a
taleTold by an idiot, full of sound and
furySignifying nothing." Macbeth (Act 5, Scene
5, lines 17-28)
  • Definition Words that are spoken by a character
    in a play to the audience only or to another
    character only. They are not supposed to be
    overheard by others on stage. It is meant to let
    someone in on a secret or for a character to give
    personal comments about current events in the

More Elements of Prose
  • Tone The attitude the writer takes toward the
    subject of a work, the characters in it, or the
  • I am getting married

Tone Example
  • The Author To Her Book
  •  Thou ill-formed offspring of my feeble
    brain,Who after birth did'st by my side
    remain,Till snatcht from thence by friends, less
    wise than true,Who thee abroad exposed to public
    view,Made thee in rags, halting to th' press to
    trudge,Where errors were not lessened (all may
    judge).At thy return my blushing was not
    small,My rambling brat (in print) should mother
    call.I cast thee by as one unfit for light,The
    visage was so irksome in my sight,Yet being mine
    own, at length affection wouldThy blemishes
    amend, if so I could.

I washed thy face, but more defects I saw,And
rubbing off a spot, still made a flaw.I stretcht
thy joints to make thee even feet,Yet still thou
run'st more hobbling than is meet.In better
dress to trim thee was my mind,But nought save
home-spun cloth, i' th' house I find.In this
array, 'mongst vulgars may'st thou roam.In
critic's hands, beware thou dost not come,And
take thy way where yet thou art not known.If for
thy father askt, say, thou hadst noneAnd for
thy mother, she alas is poor,Which caused her
thus to send thee out of door.  -Anne Bradstreet
  • Denotation Dictionary definition of a word
  • Example Mom-Female individual who gives birth
    and physical care to her offspring.
  • Connotation Feelings people get from hearing or
    reading a particular word
  • - Example Mom-Hug, loving, caring, dries
    tears, role model

  • Dog-
  • Denotation Domesticated, 4-legged canine
  • Connotation Smelly, fluffy, mans best friend
  • playful, loyal,

  • Fair-
  • Denotation Amusement park which travels also
    includes agricultural exhibits
  • Connotation fun, food, crowded, smelly, carnies
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