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Aristotle in his Poetics argued that “tragedy is a representation, not of men, but of action and life.” Thus the assertion of the dominance of plot over characters, termed “plot-driven narrative,” is unmistakable.This point of view was later abandoned by many because, in the 19th century, the dominance of character over plot became clear through petty bourgeois novels.After introducing the character, the writer often talks about his behavior; then, as the story progresses, the thought-processes of the character.
The audience has to deduce for themselves the characteristics of the character by observing his/her thought process, behavior, speech, way of talking, appearance, and manner of communication with other characters, as well as by discerning the response of other characters.
On stage or in front of the camera, actors usually do not have much time to characterize.
Understanding the role of characterization in storytelling is very important for any writer.
To put it briefly, it helps us make sense of the behavior of any character in a story by helping us understand their thought processes.
The final part shows how others in the story respond to the character’s personality.
Characterization as a literary tool was coined in the mid 15th century.The prime example is Gatsby who, despite being so rich, is known by his profession: bootlegging.He had an illegal job that earned him a fortune, but failed to get him into the upper class of New York society.There are many examples of characterization in literature. In this particular book, the main idea revolves around the social status of each character. Gatsby, is perceptibly rich, but he does not belong to the upper stratum of society. Tom is essentially defined by his wealth and the abusive nature that he portrays every now and then, while Daisy is explained by Gatsby as having a voice “full of money.”Another technique to highlight the qualities of a character is to put them in certain areas that are symbolic of a social status.In the novel, Gatsby resides in the West Egg, which is considered less trendy than East Egg, where Daisy lives.In contrast, Nick has a clean and fair job of a “bond man” that defines his character.The poor guy Wilson, who fixes rich people’s cars, befriends his wife; and then there is Jordon, who is presented as a dishonest golf pro.This division is reinforced at the end of the novel when Nick supports Gatsby against the rest of the folk.Occupations have also been used very tactfully in the novel to highlight characteristics of certain protagonists.This difference points out the gap between Jay’s and Daisy’s social statuses.Moreover, you might also notice that Tom, Jordan, and Daisy live in East Egg while Gatsby and Nick reside in West Egg, which again highlights the difference in their financial background.