Direct characterization occurs when the narrator or a character directly tells the audience about a character, as in "Romeo and Juliet" when Mercutio describes his adversary Tybalt in detail. Similarly, in the short story "The Story of an Hour," the narrator directly tells the audience that "Mrs. Mallard was afflicted with a heart trouble." By contrast, indirect characterization shows what the character does and lets the audience infer characterization.Continue Reading
In works of fiction, authors employ a wide variety of strategies to create and present characters to audiences. In general, authors use some combination of both direct and indirect characterization to describe characters.
Usually, if physical attributes of characters are specifically explained, then the author is using direct characterization. For example, in "Romeo and Juliet," the Nurse directly characterizes Romeo when she says, "his face be better than any man's." Similarly, when authors' narrators or characters use adjectives to describe a state of being or emotion, it is most often direct characterization, but when the emotion is portrayed through an action, it is indirect characterization. In Kate Chopin's "The Story of an Hour" the narrator tells how Mrs. Mallard's heart beats and how her breathing changes instead of saying, "she was happy" or "she was sad." Because the audience has to infer, that is an example of indirect characterization.Learn more about Literary Writing
The most well-known dramatic foil character in "Romeo and Juliet" is Mercutio. He acts as a direct opposite of the protagonist, Romeo. Mercutio is a skeptic, while Romeo is a romantic. Foils are used to bring emphasis to the qualities of another character, and they often serve as comic relief.Full Answer >
In Shakespeare's tragedy, "Romeo and Juliet," Mercutio says, "A plague o' both your houses" because the feud between the Capulet and Montague families has led to the events that resulted in his death. He speaks these words in Act 3, Scene 1, and his words turn out to be very prophetic as the play unfolds.Full Answer >
This quote comes from Shakespeare's 'Romeo and Juliet,' and Romeo says this line in reference to Mercutio, meaning that Mercutio has not been in love and does not know what Romeo is truly feeling. Romeo says this line in Act 2, Scene 2 when Mercutio is teasing Romeo about his love scars.Full Answer >
The phrase, "From forth the fatal loins of these two foes" in William Shakespeare's "Romeo and Juliet" announces to the audience that the unfortunate children born to the two warring families, the Capulets and the Montagues, are fated or destined to fall in love and die because of it. The next line completes the idea, "A pair of star-crossed lovers will take their life ..."Full Answer >