Characterization Powerpoint

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Literary Terms: Characterization
Mr. Myers
CP English 9
What Is a Character?
A character is a person in a story, poem, or play.
Courtesy Katrina Simpson
CORBIS Images/HRW
CLEO PHOTOGRAPHY/PhotoEdit
•Animals, divinities, and heroes with superhuman powers
can also be characters.
How Writers Reveal Character
– Writers reveal a character’s personality through
characterization.
– Characterization may be direct or indirect.
Direct and Indirect
Characterization
An alert writer might recognize that the
two methods of characterization fall under
the decision to “show” or to “tell”.
Indirect characterization “shows” the
reader.
Direct characterization “tells” the reader.
DIRECT CHARACTERIZATION:
Type of characterization where the
author tells the reader exactly what
the character is like. “[Gale’s] good-looking, he’s
strong enough to handle the
Betsy
was
sharp-tongued.
She
had
an
work
in
the
mines,
and he
Fred was a angry man
hunt.
You can tell
by the
who
hated children.
opinion
about everythingcan
and
wasn’t
afraid
way the girls whisper about
toKirk
speak
She’d give
advice
toby in
Mr.
is theher
typemind.
of guy who
him when
he walks
school that they want him”
likes
to
help
old
ladies
across
anyone and everyone whether
they asked
(10).
the street and then begs them
for
it or
not.numbers.
for
their
phone
Direct Characterization
Examples:
Excerpt from The Sun Also Rises by Ernest Hemingway:
That
Robert Cohn
went over
to America
with his novel
Edwinter
Johnson
scratched
his
head in
and it was accepted by a fairly good publisher. His going
confusion
as
the
sales
rep
explained
made an awful row I heard, and I think that was wherer
Dralco’s
newest
performance
Frances
lost him,
because engine
several women
were nice to him in
New
York, and when
he came back
he was
changed. He
diagnostic
computer.
The
oldquite
mechanic
was more enthusiasitc about America than ever, and he was
modern
electronics,
preferring
nothated
so simple,
and he was
not so nice. The
publishers had
praised
pretty
highlyall
andhe
it went
to his head.
the his
oldnovel
days
when
needed
wasThen
a
several women had put themselves out to be nice to him, and
manuals
hisstack
horizonsofhad
all shifted. and a good set of
tools.
What is going on
in this picture?
What is this girl
feeling? Why do
you think she is
feeling this way?
The
type ofacharacterization
where the
It wasn’t
surprise when Betsy
reader
mustagain.
infer what
a character
like
interrupted
“That’s
no way toiscatch
from
whatshe
the said
character
says,“We
or
the thief,”
rollingdoes,
her eyes.
thinks.
can’t just wait until he robs another
When
writers
usegot
indirect
characterization,
museum.
We’ve
to be prepared.
We’ve
readers
tofirst.
use their
own ajudgment
to
got to behave
there
We need
piece of art
decide
a character
like, based on
he can’twhat
resist.
We need is
a trap!”
the evidence the writer gives us.
When writers use indirect
characterization, readers must
decide what the character is like
based on
•
•
•
•
•
the character’s speech
the character’s appearance
the character’s private thoughts
the responses of other characters
the character’s actions
Julie held up six different outfits in front of
the mirror and pondered which would go
best with her navy blue shoes, pastel eye
shadow and the diamond earrings she’d
already procured from her overflowing vanity.
After ninety minutes of mixing and matching,
and cell-phoning her sister three times for
advice, Julie finally made up her mind. She’d
give the navy blue skirt and white sweater a
try, hoping Trent would love it.
Example:
“Father Kavangah was praying, his Irish
mumble amplified by the PA system into the
voice of God. He pinched the Host out of the
chalice and raised it like a man admiring a silver
dollar, Tim’s cue to shake the bells. He thrashed
them, brass clashing brass so harshly that heads
flinched. Kavanagh flung Tim a thunderbolt
glare. Tim stiffened his face” (Furhman, 1).
Speech
• Pay attention to
– the way the character speaks—tone of
voice, dialect, volume
– the words the character uses—slang,
contractions, long, difficult words
“Stop messing with the camera and take
the picture already, why doncha. I don’t
want to stand out here in the heat all day.
I’ve got things to do,” Aunt Ida hollered.
Appearance
• Pay attention to
– the way the character looks
– the kinds of clothes the character wears
Jack checked his reflection in the window. His red
hair was cut short with a bit of a spike in the front, and
his pale skin was cleanshaven. His gray pinstriped
trousers had wrinkled a bit during the train ride, but
the creases in his pant legs were still sharp. As the train
pulled into the station, he stood up, adjusted his tie,
and re-tucked his starched blue shirt. Then, he draped
his suit jacket over his arm, picked up his briefcase, and
waited for a break in the stream of people exiting the
train.
Private Thoughts
• Pay attention to
– what the character thinks and feels about the
events and other characters
“Why did I ever agree to this?” Gerald asked himself
as he loaded his camping gear into the van. He could
list a dozen other things that he needed to get done
this weekend.
“Gerald,” Kevin said as he walked up beside him,
“Glad you could make it, man. I know you’ve been
busy with the new job and all . . .”
“Hey, no problem. I always have time for my
friends,” Gerald replied with a forced smile.
Response of Other Characters
• Pay attention to
– what other characters think about the character
– what other characters say about the character
– how other characters act toward the character
“Did you hear that Candace made the team?” Ray
asked.
“Yeah,” replied Bonnie, “I’m so happy for her. She was
determined to make the cut this year—she and I
practiced every weekend, and she worked really hard to
improve her serve and backhand. She even beat me a few
times.”
• Pay attention to
Actions
– what the character does
– how the character does it (willingly, grudgingly,
joyfully)
Nina hummed to herself as she chopped up
vegetables—celery, carrots, bell peppers—for
the soup. She cheerfully carried the cutting
board over to the stove and tilted it so all the
vegetables slid into the stock pot. Then she
turned, held the cutting board above her head
with one hand, and shimmied over to the sink.
What Have You Learned?
Determine whether each of the following statements is true or
false.
1. Characters in stories, poems, and plays are always people.
a. true
b. false
2. When trying to determine what a character is like based on speech, you should
pay attention to tone of voice.
a. true
b. false
3. When writers use direct characterization, they allow readers to interpret what a
character is like.
a. true
b. false
Now, with a partner, create an
INDIRECT characterization to
demonstrate the following
personalities:
1.A jealous and angry person.
2.A kind and generous person.
3.A dangerous wild animal.
A stock character is a fictional character that
relies heavily on cultural types or stereotypes
for its personality, manner of speech, and
other characteristics.
•The Boy/Girl Next Door
•The Nerd
•The Jock
•The Princess
•The Goofy Sidekick
•The Tragic Hero
•The Reluctant Hero
•The Old Maid
•The Wise Guide
•Etc…
• FLAT
• A type of character
who does not seem
to have many
different character
traits. Usually a
minor character.
• ROUND
• A character who, like a
real person, has many
different character
traits. Usually are
complex and often go
through changes, some
of them are surprising.
A character who does not change
much in a story.
A type of character who goes
through a noticeable change
from the beginning to the end
of the story
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