This remarkable and monumental book at last provides a comprehensive answer to the age-old riddle of whether there are only a small number of 'basic stories'. that there are only a handful of basic plots to stories, I had never taken it any fundamental to the way we tell stories that it is virtually impossible for any story. The Seven Basic Plots. Christopher Booker. I. Overcoming the Monster. A. Basic Light character is generally static – stays the same throughout the story iii.
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The Seven Basic Plots: Why We Tell Stories is a book by Christopher Booker containing a . Create a book · Download as PDF · Printable version. The Seven Basic Plots: Why We Tell Stories. Home · The Seven Basic Shall We Tell The President. Read more Stories Of The Seven Sisters · Read more. Underlying the stories he examines are Seven Basic Plots: rags to riches; the quest; we have come to the heart of what stories are about and why we tell them.
The Seven Basic Plots provides a Jungian-influenced analysis of stories and their psychological meaning.
Booker worked on the book for 34 years. The Meta-Plot The meta-plot begins with the anticipation stage, in which the hero is called to the adventure to come. This is followed by a dream stage, in which the adventure begins, the hero has some success, and has an illusion of invincibility.
However, this is then followed by a frustration stage, in which the hero has his first confrontation with the enemy, and the illusion of invincibility is lost.
This worsens in the nightmare stage, which is the climax of the plot, where hope is apparently lost. What each of the other characters represents is really only some aspect of the inner state of the hero or heroine themselves.
The protagonist and companions set out to acquire an important object or to get to a location.
They face temptations and other obstacles along the way. The protagonist goes to a strange land and, after overcoming the threats it poses to them, they return with experience.
Mad Max: Light and humorous character with a happy or cheerful ending; a dramatic work in which the central motif is the triumph over adverse circumstance, resulting in a successful or happy conclusion.
It refers to a pattern where the conflict becomes more and more confusing, but is at last made plain in a single clarifying event.
The majority of romance films fall into this category. The protagonist's character flaw or great mistake which is their undoing. Their unfortunate end evokes pity at their folly and the fall of a fundamentally good character. An event forces the main character to change their ways and often become a better person.
In adult stories, three can convey the gradual working out of a process that leads to transformation. This transformation can be downwards as well as upwards. Booker asserts that the Rule of Three is expressed in four ways:. Scholars and journalists have had mixed responses to The Seven Basic Plots. But his mystical sweep represses some quite functional explanations of how literature actually works.
He asserts that "the force of convention" is not an adequate explanation for the connection between books. The reason must lie in "something much deeper".
Can it be that influence has no place in the history of literature? Does Ian Fleming "tap unerringly" into the collective unconscious, or had he simply read a lot of the same books as Christopher Booker?
The real test of a theory is whether it helps us understand individual works better.
The problem with Booker's is that its increasingly broad strokes require numerous elisions and distortions. We are told that Middlemarch ends when "the lovers confront each other, declare their love and walk liberated into the future.
His dismissal of Ulysses as masturbatory, perhaps the most wrong-headed reading here, does not even acknowledge the existence of Stephen Dedalus. More generally, the factual errors that pepper the text are indicative of an approach that is uninterested in detail. There may be only seven basic plots, but there are thousands of stories.