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Character Archetypes

Character Archetypes

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Character Archetypes

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  1. Character Archetypes A brief overview of the basics of archetypes in literature. Ms. Mitchell’s Class

  2. From an unknown origin, but are preset at the moment of birth in everyone. • They are the symbolic forms in the world’s myths, religions, art, literature and dreams. • Archetypes are present in every culture & every historical time period. So, what is an archetype?

  3. Shared with all of humanity • Connects us to past and future • Express themselves in various forms • Grow out of people’s social, psychological and biological beings • Universal & keep common traits • Cannot be explained by interactions among cultures • Recurrent, happen over all generations & cultures Characteristics of archetypes:

  4. It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s an…archetype!

  5. Hero=male • Heroine = female • This archetype embodies key traits valued by it’s originating culture. • Generally superhuman • Able to perform extraordinary deeds for others The Hero

  6. Hero/heroine is taken away as a young person • Raised by strangers • Later returns home where he/she is a stranger who can see new problems and solutions. The Young Person from the Provinces

  7. Young hero/heroine who, prior to their quest, goes through training and ceremony • Usually innocent and often wear white The Initiates

  8. An honorable protagonist with a tragic flaw (aka fatal flaw) • This flaw leads to his or her demise • The death of the tragic hero saves others in the story. The Tragic Hero

  9. A character that has some characteristic that are anti-ethical • Performs “heroic” acts that are not done in heroic ways. The Anti Hero

  10. Onto the ladies…Female Archetypes

  11. Ideas of nourishment and creation • Worshipped as a source of life • Has the ability to give new birth to objects that seem dead Mother Goddess

  12. Sensual beauty • Protagonist is physically attracted to her • She ultimately brings about his downfall The Temptress

  13. Source of inspiration & spiritual ideal • Protagonist has intellectual rather than physical attraction toward her The Platonic Ideal

  14. The Unfaithful Wife/Friend • Married to a man she sees as dull • Attracted to a more desirable man

  15. Damsel in Distress • Vulnerable woman • Must be rescued by the hero • Often used to ensnare the hero

  16. In General…Character Archetypes

  17. A “wise-fool,” rascal who looks out for himself • Inventive agent whose actions can benefit human society • Symbolizes humans’ excess & outrageousness The Trickster

  18. Mentors • Serve as teachers or counselors to the initiates • Sometimes role models and parental figure

  19. Group of Companions • Loyal companions willing to face any perils in order to be together

  20. Loyal Retainers • Protect the hero/heroine • Reflect the nobility of the hero/heroine • Somewhat like servants • Heroic themselves

  21. The Friendly Beast • Animal that befriends man

  22. Evil Figure with Good Heart • Redeemable devil figure • Saved by nobility (or love) of the hero/heroine

  23. The Outcast • Banished from social group for some crime against fellow people • Destined to become a wanderer

  24. The Devil Figure • Evil incarnate • Offers worldly goods (fame/knowledge) in exchange for their soul

  25. Public punishment and/or death gets rid of a sin that has been visited upon a community The Scapegoat

  26. Monster • Usually summoned from the deepest, darkest part of human psyche to threaten the hero/heroine. The Creature of the Nightmare

  27. Let’s Review…

  28. Which archetype does this character display? Trickster

  29. Which archetype does this character display? Mother Goddess

  30. Which archetype does this character display? Tragic Hero

  31. Which archetype does this character display? Creature of the Nightmare

  32. Which archetype does this character display? The Platonic Ideal

  33. Which archetype does this character display? Hero

  34. Which archetype does this character display? The Temptress

  35. Which archetype does this character display? The Scapegoat

  36. Which archetype does this character display? Anti Hero

  37. Good Job My Genius Students!!! Anti Hero