The written text of a play, which includes the dialogue between characters, stage directions, and often other expository information.
A play that is written to be read rather than performed on-stage.
A major division in the action of a play.
A subdivision of an act.
Characters as actants; subject desires object
Central meaning or dominant idea in a literary work.
The physical and social context in which the action of a story occurs.
The opening speech or dialogue of a play that usually gives the exposition necessary to follow the subsequent action.
Often used at the beginning of a work, provides necessary background information about the characters and their circumstances.
The verbal exchanges between characters.
The struggle within the plot between opposing forces.
An author's selection and arrangement of incidents in a story to shape the action and give the story a particular focus.
The secondary action of the story, complete and interesting in its own right, that reinforces or contrasts with the main plot.
The main character of a narrative; its central character who engages the reader's interest and empathy.
The character, force, or collection of forces in fiction or drama that opposes the protagonist and gives rise to conflict of the story.
a playwright's written instructions about how the actors are to move and behave in a play.
Divide the plot into three essential parts; rising action, climax, falling action.
Complications creates some sort of conflict for the protagonist.
A turning point in the action of a story that has a powerful effect on the protagonist.
Moment of greatest emotional tension, usually marking a turning point in the plot in which the rising action reverses to become the falling action.
The resolution of the plot's conflicts and complications.
The conclusion of a plot's conflicts and complications
Resolution of the plot following the climax.
In Media Res
Beginning a story in the middle of the action.
A character whose behavior and values contrast with those of another character in order to highlight the distinctive temperament of that character.
The point in a story when the protagonist's fortunes turn in an unexpected direction.
Deus ex machina
"God in the machine", any improbable means by which an author provides a too-easy resolution for a story.
A story that presents courageous individuals who confront powerful forces within or outside themselves with a dignity that reveals the breadth and depth of the human spirit in the face of failure, defeat, and even death.
Basically consist of a murder that has to be avenged by a relative of the victim.
Combines certain elements of both tragedy and comedy. Ends happily.
Intended to interest, involve, and amuse the reader or audience, in which no terrible disasters occur and ends happily for the main characters.
"Some error or frailty" that brings about misfortune for a tragic hero.
An error or defect in the tragic hero that leads to his downfall.
Excessive pride or self-confidence that leads a protagonist to disregard a divine warning or to violate an important moral law.
Purgation, describes the release of the emotions of pity and fear by the audience at the end of a tragedy.
The moment in a story when previously unknown or withheld information is revealed to the protagonist, resulting in discovery of the truth of his or her situation, and, usually, a decisive change in course for that character.
Creates a discrepancy between what a character believes or says and what the reader knows to be true.
Form of dramatic irony found in tragedies.
A speech directed to the audience that supposedly is not audible to the other characters onstage at the time.
A character, alone onstage, utters his or her thoughts aloud.
A term applied to any literary work that relies on implausible events and sensational action for its effect.
A humorous scene or incident that alleviates tension in an otherwise serious work.
Presents a social issue in order to awaken the audience to it.
A realistic style of play that employs conventions including plenty of suspense created by meticulous plotting.
A term used to describe universal symbols that evoke deep and sometimes unconscious responses in a reader.
Works considered to be the most important to read and study, constitutes "masterpieces" of literature.