Aristotle's Definition of Tragedy

Topics: Poetics, Tragedy, Tragic hero Pages: 2 (382 words) Published: February 17, 2014
Aristotle’s definition of tragedy

It’s not all about beauty, art and nature
Accounts for tragedy as a scientific phenomena
“Everything unfolding on the stage should have a specific psychological effect on the audience” Literary theory: a theorist accounting for a complex piece of literature, labeling parts explaining notably what does happen in the literature but what should happen in the literature. Tragic hero: function of literature

Characteristics of a tragic hero
Shakespeare quote
Purpose of that characteristic
“First, and most important, it must be good”
The tragic hero be morally good/obtain virtues
This way, the character can explicit sympathy from the audience. “The second thing to aim is at is propriety”
The character must pose virtues that are appropriate to its character. Women: love, nature, warmth
Man: Bravery, heroic
The audience can better make connections
“Character must be true to life ”
Character must be realistic
If the character is unrealistic, the audience cannot connect to the character on a deeper level for he/she has no particular relevance to their life. -Audience cannot empathize
“The fourth point is consistency”
The character must act to a consistent psychology
>if a character is selfish, he must remain consistently selfish, UNLESS a major event occurs.

“Hamartia” – tragic flaw; hero downfall must be caused by the hero him or herself (decision often in ignorance.) “Parapeta”-tragic irony: it is the hero who brings about his tragic destiny, not some kind of exterior antagonist. “catastrophe”-reversal of fortune: powerful to powerless “Anagnorisis”- tragic hero understands that the mistake was his and is forced to accept his enviable fate. Audience Effect

If everything on stage happens the right way, the audience should feel Pity and fear for the tragic hero because they empathize with him/her Fear: if this can happen to the greatest of us then what hope do we have being inferior to the...
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