8 ELEMENTS OF CHARACTER Oklahoma 5th Reading PASS Objective 3.2c
When we are analyzing a literarycharacter, we can look at 8 differentelements to give us a completepicture to better understand thecharacter.
The 8 ElementsPhysical Words &Description ActionsBackground MotivationPersonality ConflictRelationships Change
Physical DescriptionWhat does the character look like?How does the character dress?How does the character walk?How does the character sit?Anything that you can see that gives us a better picture of who thecharacter is.
Background Born on a ranch inWho is this person? Oklahoma. Grew up helping his father takeWhere were they raised? care of the animals on the ranch. Learned howWhat do they know how to do? to drive a tractor when he was only 6 years old.What kind of job have they had? Worked as a foreman on a ranch when he wasWhat special skills do they have? young.
Personalityshy What kind of person is the character?outgoing Find actions that illustrate this or otherangry characters saying it.pleasant This can change according to thefearful circumstances in the story, but will usually guide how they will behaveimpulsive during situations they may face.
RelationshipsHow do they get along with people?Do they have alot of friends?Do they just have close friends?Do they get along with their family?
Words & ActionsWhat does the character say and do?What do others say about your character?Not EVERYTHING that someone may say about a character istrue.Watch for words that the character repeats (NOT ‘the’ & ‘and’)Watch what other characters say to a character and what they saybehind their backs.
Motivation moneyWhy does your character dowhat they do? fear desire for fameIt could be what your characterwants or it could be something prove someonethey are trying to get away wrongfrom. prove someone right
ConflictWe all know the three types.What is standing in the way of your character getting what theywant?This will usually drive the plot or the sequence of events in thestory.
ChangeDon’t just say “the character changed during the story”.HOW do they change?Did they become nicer?Did they become meaner?Did they become depressed?Not ALL characters will change!
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