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Rags to Riches

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Rags to Riches. The Seven Basic Plots. The basic premise to the basic plots:. - PowerPoint PPT Presentation

Rags to RichesThe Seven Basic PlotsThe basic premise to the basic plots: Christopher Booker argues that all storytelling is woven around basic plots and archetypes that are inescapable and help to define the human condition. We are psychologically programmed to tell stories in a way that reflects our most basic physiological needs. 2The plots are:Overcoming the MonsterRags to RichesThe QuestVoyage and ReturnComedyTragedyRebirth3Rags to RichesWe see an ordinary, insignificant person, dismissed by everyone as of little account, who suddenly steps to the center of the stage, revealed to be someone quiet exceptional.

Rags to RichesLegend of King ArthurPygmalion/My Fair LadyThe Ugly DucklingAladdin

This plot is one of the earliest we come to know as children.

5Rags to RichesThe plot is rooted in folk tales from around the world and is regarded as one of the most basic stories in the world.In most Rags to Riches tales, have nothing to do with literal riches, but instead synonymous with our notion of a happy ending6Rags to Riches: the hero or heroineWe are introduced to the central figure in childhood, or at least before full maturity. We know immediately that the story is about the process of growing up.

The hero or heroine is usually inferior: an orphan, or the youngest child and disregarded by family and peers.

They languish in the shadows of a dominant, antagonistic dark figure. 7Rags to Riches: the dark figuresAdult figures: wicked stepmothers, domineering aunts or uncles, etc. This figure usually replaces the parent.Young figures: wicked stepsisters, fratricidal brothers, scornful ducklings. This figure acts as a rival to the hero or heroine.The dark figures are often a combination of characteristics we see from Overcoming the Monster.8Rags to Riches: the central crisisEarly on the story, the inferior hero experiences some success and is elevated from his original lowly status.However, these changes in fortune are superficial, and soon the hero encounters a CENTRAL CRISIS in which all seems lost. It is this central crisis that highlights some aspect of the hero or heroines immaturity. He or she must grow from this central crisis in order to attain the true, complete happy ending.

9Rags to Riches: plot outlineInitial wretchedness at home & the call: we are introduced to the hero in his lowly and unhappy state. The dark figures are the source of his misery. This phase ends when something happens to call them out into a wider world.Out into the world, initial success: Early efforts are rewarded, and the hero may have some glimpse of the greater glory he will someday achieve. However, it is made clear that they are not yet ready for their final state of complete fulfillment. 10Rags to Riches: plot outlineThe central crisis: Everything suddenly goes wrong. Reduced to a new powerlessness, this is the worst part of the story for the hero or heroine.Independence and the final ordeal: The hero is discovering in himself a new independent strength. The hero is put to a final test, in which a dark rival may stand between the hero and ultimate fulfillment.11Rags to Riches: plot outlineFinal union, completion and fulfillment: the reward is usually a state of complete, loving union with the Prince or Princess. They may also succeed to some kind of kingdom. The implied ending is that they lived happily ever after. 12

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