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Aristotle’s Definition of a Tragic Hero B. C

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Presentation on theme: "Aristotle’s Definition of a Tragic Hero B. C"— Presentation transcript:

1 Aristotle’s Definition of a Tragic Hero 384-322 B. C
Aristotle’s Definition of a Tragic Hero B.C. (written 2,300 years ago!) Six Traits

2 Aristotle ( BC): Greek philosopher and scientist. The most famous of ancient philosophers and tutor of Alexander the Great. His ideas about tragedy were recorded in his book of literary theory titled Poetics.  

3 In it, he explains the structure, purpose, and intended effect of tragedy. 
His ideas have been adopted, disputed, expanded, and discussed for several centuries.

4 It is important to remember that the term “hero” when discussing tragedy does not refer to someone who is necessarily “heroic.” Hero instead means simply “main character.”

5 1 The hero must be noble stature and have greatness of some sort. He or she must be from a high social status, and must have nobility and virtue as part of his or her character.

6 2 Though the tragic hero is great, he or she cannot be perfect. The audience needs to see him/her as someone who is essentially like “us”.

7 3 The hero’s downfall is wholly or partially his/her own fault. It is usually due to an error in judgment.

8 4 Usually, the character’s tragic flaw is due to “hubris” or excessive pride or arrogance.

9 5 The hero’s misfortune is not wholly deserved – the punishment is worse than the crime. The punishment cannot be pure loss – the hero learns something from the events.

10 6 Though it makes the audience sad, the fate of the hero should not leave the audience depressed. The function of tragedy is to leave the audience with a feeling of “catharsis” or a cleansing of emotions.

11 Your Task Decide for yourself whether Antigone or Creon is the tragic hero of the play Antigone. Create a diagram (example on next slide) that proves your choice by using evidence from the story. You must have six pieces of evidence. Diagram is due on WEDNESDAY at the beginning of class.

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