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Aristotle’s Six Elements of Tragedy (in order of importance) 1. Plot- not the story itself but the way the events are presented - outcome should depend on a cause-and-effect chain of actions - must be “a whole,” with a beginning(incentive movement), middle(climax), and end (resolution) - the chain of events between the beginning and the climax is the “tying up” or desis (complication) - the chain of events between the climax to the resolution is the “unraveling” or lusis (denouement) - must be complete with unity of action - must be serious and of universal significance - complex plots are better - simple plots have only a catastrophe or “change of fortune” - complex plots have both peripeteia or “reversal of intention” and anagnorisis or “recognition” connected with the catastrophe 2. Character -supports plot; personal motivations should be connected to the chain of events -protagonist should be renowned and prosperous -protagonist’s change of fortune should be a result of his hamartia (tragic flaw) 3. Thought - is found “where something is proved to be or not to be, or a general maxim is enunciated” (theme) - speeches should reveal character 4. Diction or Language -stylistic elements (dialogue, figurative language) 5. Song or Music –the Chorus should be fully integrated into the play 6. Spectacle (scenery, costumes, and other visual elements) -should contribute to the action
"Aristotle's Six Elements of Tragedy _in order of importance_"