Thread: Fatal Flaw?
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Old 03-30-2010, 05:19 PM   #88
JimHull
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Join Date: Mar 2010
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Default Re: Fatal Flaw?

Which is why Rick is the Main Character and Lazlo is the Protagonist.

There is a difference between the audience's reception of a story and the work of fiction itself.

Sure, the audience doesn't care much whether Lazlo gets away or not (I would argue that from a logical standpoint they do), but within the story itself -- the players inside of the story - they care a great deal. In fact, it is what everyone in the story is concerned with - from Strasser to Ugarte to Ilsa to everyone - those letters and who ends up with them are a very important concern to them and the source of problems within the story.

Stories are about resolving problems - understanding what those problems specifically are can help one determine how best to craft an effective argument for how to go about resolving them.

Your attachment to Rick as the only one the audience cares about speaks to the fact that he is the Main Character - that we are him throughout the course of the story (empathy).

As far as the confusion with the narrator, I think you're missing the point that these narrators have deep emotional issues going on with them that go far beyond just telling the story. The thematic concerns that Red and Scout deal with are an essential part of the story's meaning - they are not separate from it. Scout deals with her own personal problems with racism (in her dealings with Boo) and Red deals with his own personal issues stemming from the fact that he has become institutionalized. These very personal viewpoints on the story's central problem are reflected in the larger overall story that everyone is concerned with (the racist attitudes present in the trial in Mockinbird, and the corrupt hopeless situation that keeps Andy unjustly locked away).

The Protagonist carries the logical argument of the story, the Main Character carries the emotional argument.

Last edited by JimHull : 03-30-2010 at 05:37 PM.
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