The Types of Characters in Literature | Pen and the Pad

 

types of character in literature

Types of Character. There are many types of the characters which include: Confidante. A confidante is someone in whom the main character confides. He reveals the central character’s thoughts, intentions, and personality traits. However, a confidante need not necessarily be a person. An animal can also be a confidante. Dynamic Character. The Types of Characters in Literature. A story, novel or play may achieve the status of literature for various reasons: a distinctive writing style, a gripping plot or noteworthy philosophical insights. Above all else, however, works of literature have strong, memorable characters. Though great characters feel completely original. Types of Characters in Literature. The personality of such a character is not consistent, which makes the character more realistic than others in the piece of writing. Example: Harry Potter, Ronald Weasley, Hermione Granger, Ginny Weasley and Severus Snape are among some of the round characters in Author: Puja Lalwani.


Character Types in Literature: Writing Guide - A Research Guide for Students


As a writer or reader of fiction, you'll encounter many types of characters: round characters, flat characters, stock characters, and protagonists, among others. Also, don't be discouraged if you receive critiques telling you that your character is flat. Flat characters are minor characters in a work of fiction who do not undergo substantial change or growth in the course of a story.

Often, these characters serve no purpose other than to move the story along, so who they are as people is of no significance to the plot. In some instances, they may be more parts of the setting than characters. When people say a character is static, they're referring to the fact that a character doesn't change. Such characters usually are a type of flat character. A key difference often is that static characters might appear in more than one scene. Perhaps your main character lives in a building with a doorman, and to develop your character, you show the kind of small talk she engages in with the doorman each time she enters or leaves.

Round characters, unsurprisingly, are the opposite of flat characters. For readers, these are the characters you will put the most effort into following and understanding, and for writers, they are the most challenging to develop. Round characters are multidimensional, complex, nuanced, and often contradictory.

Round characters don't have to be the main characters in a story, but they serve an important enough role in the plot or a subplot that giving their personalities multiple layers is a necessity. Just as round characters are the opposite of flat characters, dynamic characters are the opposite of static characters. Consider how the doorman used as an example of a static character types of character in literature instead be a dynamic character if fleshed out a bit more.

As the doorman gets to know the main character a little better, perhaps he discovers something unsavory about her character and must decide whether to act on that information. Regardless of what he chooses, his encounters with the main character are likely to change as his perception of her changes.

Stock characters are similar to static characters, but they often represent a particular stereotype. They are difficult to pull off in fiction unless you are writing satire, and even then, there must be much thought behind including a stock character in your narrative.

The purpose of a stock character is to move the story along by allowing the audience to already understand the character. For example, the main character might be on the run from the mob and encounters a mob enforcer. While it's unoriginal to present the character as a stereotypical goon, types of character in literature, it does move the story along quicker because the audience already is familiar with what that stock character represents.

Protagonists are the main characters in your fiction, types of character in literature. They are round characters with whom readers sympathize. However, types of character in literature, they are not always completely moral or likable. It's important for types of character in literature to be relatable even if they are not likable. Readers need to believe protagonists and understand their choices. Captain Types of character in literature in Herman Melville's "Moby Dick" is a good example of a protagonist who is relatable yet unlikable.

Ahab's stubbornness and obsession with the whale that bit off his leg negatively impact the rest of the characters in the story, yet readers can relate to the emotion of becoming obsessed to the point of detriment to themselves and those around them, types of character in literature.

Antagonists often are known as the bad guy in works of fiction. They attempt to prevent protagonists from getting what they want or need. An antagonist also should be a round character. Making an antagonist evil is not as interesting as making the character conflicted. Pure evil is very hard to believe in fiction since people are multifaceted and inspired by their situations and personal histories. One of the most iconic antagonists in film history is Darth Vader from "Star Wars.

As the story develops, his character also is developed and viewers learn types of character in literature and why he became types of character in literature a violent and intimidating figure. Just as people in real life, characters in fiction need someone in whom they can confide. Confidantes work best when they are round characters dealing with their own conflicts and issues, but they serve the story as someone who can help the protagonist in his own conflict.

In Leo Tolstoy's "Anna Karenina," Anna often turns to her sister-in-law, Dolly, to discuss the problems that have arisen because of her relationship with Vronsky. Dolly is an interesting choice because she herself has been victimized by her own husband's infidelities, and as the novel begins, it is Anna who is serving as Dolly's confidante.

A foil is someone who possesses the opposite traits of a main character, often the protagonist. The purpose of the foil is to serve as a contrast, types of character in literature, which can help bring out the main character's best traits. For example, if you create a character who is known for being honest, that can be highlighted by creating a foil for the main character who is consistently dishonest and perhaps challenges the main character's own commitment to honesty.

By Ginny Wiehardt. Continue Reading.

 

4 Common Character Types in Literature — Worksheet Included

 

types of character in literature

 

Types of Character. There are many types of the characters which include: Confidante. A confidante is someone in whom the main character confides. He reveals the central character’s thoughts, intentions, and personality traits. However, a confidante need not necessarily be a person. An animal can also be a confidante. Dynamic Character. The Types of Characters in Literature. A story, novel or play may achieve the status of literature for various reasons: a distinctive writing style, a gripping plot or noteworthy philosophical insights. Above all else, however, works of literature have strong, memorable characters. Though great characters feel completely original. Types of Characters in Literature. The personality of such a character is not consistent, which makes the character more realistic than others in the piece of writing. Example: Harry Potter, Ronald Weasley, Hermione Granger, Ginny Weasley and Severus Snape are among some of the round characters in Author: Puja Lalwani.