Tragic Hero Definition for novice authors
Have you ever wanted to be a well-known author? Or do you have a specific idea of some plot, but have difficulty creating the right tragic hero?
When you are given a task to create a story and include a tragic hero there, you would better consult with this guide. It is rather difficult to create such a protagonist because you have to follow specific rules in order to make the hero appropriate for the audience. Art supposes a set of rules to be followed in order to produce an interesting story with a complexed and witty plot. Therefore, check out these pieces of advice to generate the most outstanding tragic hero possible.
Some people say that making readers cry is much easier than making laugh. They are right, to some extent. However, it is rather difficult to create a hero who is both tragic and comic. Here you will find the most outstanding facts and tips if you need to create a tragic hero. It is the most convenient way of defining the way of your character’s behavior and things he or she should do.
What you need to know
So, who is a tragic hero? Here is the definition which will make it clear for you.
In most cases, tragic heroes are used for tragedies and are supposed to be protagonists. Often, they tend to make a lot of mistakes throughout the entire story and have a complicated fate. They face ups and downs along the way and the audience usually sympathizes with them.
For example, Rome is one of the most well-known tragic heroes from Shakespeare’s “Romeo and Juliette”. His passion and love are the things that lead him to death. This is one of the most tragic finals for such a character.
Here are curious facts about a tragic hero for you to take into account:
• Aristotle (ancient Greek philosopher) was the first one to define and describe such a character.
• The word “hero” features another connotation or shade of meaning, which should not be understood in the wrong way. In most cases, heroes are not heroes at all. They might be antagonists who are instead of a protagonist or just simple characters.
What does history tells us about heroes?
The main feature, defining this type of character, is a tragedy. You may do simple research here. Like any other type and genre, a tragic hero undergoes specific evolutionary changes over some time.
Who is an ancient tragic hero?
As it was mentioned above, Aristotle was the first one to define a term of a tragic hero. According to him, a good tragedy should evoke several feelings from the audience.
He thought that these are the elements of feelings for an individual to experience catharsis. Have a look at this tragic list by Aristotle:
• Nobleness is a feature of every tragic character in ancient art. Meanwhile, he or she should be heroic in some way. Meaning, we should expect a powerful message and a certain role model from such a character. However, sympathy is a feeling to be evoked in the audience.
• A tragic feel should be got by their life and flow of this person’s type. It is called hamartia. The downfall of a character should be caused by a certain life event.
• You should feel somehow related to the hero because of all these life issues he or she faces. Some of their flows and problems should sound familiar to you.
• Fortune is a power that influences all the ancient heroes, according to the definition of the ancient philosopher.
What are the main characteristics of a tragic hero by Aristotle?
What is Hamartia?
Hamartia is a certain mistake in the behavior of the hero, which provokes their downfall. It is actually the act of wrongdoing, which influences the further destiny of the protagonist, according to Aristotle’s “Poetics”. In other words, it a point of no turning back, which modifies the behavior of the main hero.
What is Hubris?
Hubris is a quality of extreme or foolish pride or too dangerous overconfidence, combined with arrogance. In other words, it is a disrespect of a natural order of things.
What is Peripeteia?
Peripeteia is a sudden turning point when the fortune of a protagonist turns from good to bad. This is a reversal of fate, experienced by the hero.
What is Anagnorisis?
Anagnorisis is such a point in tragedy when the protagonist identifies or recognizes their true nature or the nature of someone else. It is a moment when the main hero makes a discovery.
What is Nemesis?
Nemesis is a person, event, or situation, causing a thing or a person to be seriously punished or harmed. It usually is the result of the hero’s Hubris.
What is Catharsis?
Catharsis is purgation or purification of emotions through watching the work of art. For instance, you may cry during watching a movie. According to ancient Greek philosophy, you are being purified through watching the film. So your soul becomes pure and clear,
Who is a modern tragic hero?
The whole appearance was simplified in modern times:
• The origin of a hero does not matter now. Class type and gender do not matter as well. Women and men from various social backgrounds might be tragic heroes.
• There is no need to create a real hero. You only have to make an interesting story. Such characters are not able to be defined as heroes. For instance, a hero might be even a villain, despite the absence of heroic features.
However, some of Aristotle’s key features are still demanded by a tragic hero. This is, for example, the feeling of sympathy from the audience. To name a character tragic and build him or her, the author should utilize such elements as a lack of fortune, mistakes, and tragic events.
What are the tragic hero examples?
There are many examples of classical and typical heroes. Here are some of them for you to take into consideration:
• Macbeth: This is one of the most popular tragic pieces by William Shakespeare. It is about a man who is supported by his wife when it comes to the killing of his king, according to a prophecy. Then he is becoming more and more cruel, turning into a real villain. In the end, he realizes that his wife and all his friends are dead and he is alone.
• Michael Corleone: He is a famous character from a cult Godfather trilogy. He tries to stop his fate of being a gangster until his enemies kill his daughter. Corleone is actually, an antihero, but the audience sympathizes with him because his motives were good.
• Anakin Skywalker: He is a real tragic hero from Star Wars. He is lost and misunderstood, becoming the main villain. In the beginning, he is represented with positive and pure features. However, then he gets to the dark side, becoming Darth Vader. The audience sympathizes with him because he is a victim of circumstances.
• Davy Jones: Davy is a typical example of a modern hero in the Pirates of the Caribbean. Being a sea captain, he falls in love with a sea goddess Calypso. She breaks his heart, making him bitter, tragic, and enraged. So he becomes a mixture of octopus and humanoid. Meaning, he was not bad, at first, but turned to be bad because of the broken heart.
What is the function of a tragic hero?
No tragedy is possible without tragic heroes. The main ideas of tragedies are represented by tragic heroes. Feelings of sympathy are evoked by their life challenges and downfall. By causing fear, sometimes they provide us with a certain lesson to learn. The tragic heroes might be very deep and complex if compared to other heroes.
The main target of a tragic hero is to evoke certain emotions like fear and pity in order for the audience to experience catharsis. The tragic end should make people feel sad emotions. With the help of the example of the hero, the audience gets a chance to learn wisdom from the hero’s life lessons. When the emotions of the audience are purged and cleansed, they are to become good citizens and people.
All in all, it is rather complicated to produce a tragic hero in a story that is worth reading or watching. If you have difficulty following the rules that are mentioned above in order to create a strong tragic hero, you may use our help. Our writers are experienced enough to assist you in creating an amazing storyline with great protagonists and supervillain antagonists. It will take the least of the time to help you with your piece of art.
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