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Presentation on theme: "Tragedy."— Presentation transcript:

1 Tragedy

2 Definition A drama in which a character (usually a good and noble person of high rank) is brought to a disastrous end in his or her confrontation with a superior force (fortune, the gods, social forces, universal values), but also comes to understand the meaning of his or her deeds and to accept an appropriate punishment. (The Norton Introduction to Literature, 7th ed)

3 Tragic Hero The tragic hero is a man of noble stature. He is not an ordinary man, but a man with outstanding quality and greatness about him. His own destruction is for a greater cause or principle. (<>) “high position” usually means a king, duke, prince, company owner, etc.

4 Characteristics of a Tragic Hero
According to Aristotle: Usually of noble birth Hamartia – a.k.a. the tragic flaw that eventually leads to his downfall. Peripeteia – a reversal of fortune brought about by the hero’s tragic flaw His actions result in an increase of self- awareness and self-knowledge The audience must feel pity and fear for this character.

5 The “tragic flaw” The “flaw” in the character is a defect which keeps him/her from being aware of the situation around him/her. The character does not understand (for much of the story) his/her part of creating the situation.

6 The Hero’s Understanding
The tragic hero has a “moment of enlightenment” near the end of the story. He/she finally understands what he/she has done wrong—how he/she contributed to the tragic situation. The story often ends with the death of the tragic hero.

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