The Art of Dramatic Writing: Its Basis in the Creative Interpretation of Human Motives

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Simon and Schuster, 15 feb. 1972 - 320 páginas
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Amid the hundreds of "how-to" books that have appeared in recent years, there have been very few which attempted to analyze the mysteries of play-construction. This book does that -- and its principles are so valid that they apply equally well to the short story, novel and screenplay.

Lajos Egri examines a play from the inside out, starting with the heart of any drama: its characters. For it is people -- their private natures and their inter-relationships -- that move a story and give it life. All good dramatic writing depends upon an understanding of human motives. Why do people act as they do? What forces transform a coward into a hero, a hero into a coward? What is it that Romeo does early in Shakespeare's play that makes his later suicide seem inevitable? Why must Nora leave her husband at the end of A Doll's House?

These are a few of the fascinating problems which Egri analyzes. He shows how it is essential for the author to have a basic premise -- a thesis, demonstrated in terms of human behavior -- and to develop his dramatic conflict on the basis of that behavior. Premise, character, conflict: this is Egri's ABC. His book is a direct, jargon-free approach to the problem of achieving truth in a literary creation.
 

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LibraryThing Review

Reseña de usuario  - Hagelstein - LibraryThing

Egri describes premise, character, and conflict as the essential elements - and the heart - of any play. He espouses an approach to play-writing “based on the natural law of dialectics” rather than ... Leer reseña completa

LibraryThing Review

Reseña de usuario  - Davidgnp - LibraryThing

A classic which I have come to late (both for it and for me). Of course, reading in the 21st century, you have to make some allowances for a text that was first published in the 1940s - I found the ... Leer reseña completa

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Índice

I
1
The Bone Structure
33
8
37
10
38
Environment
44
The Dialectical Approach
51
Character Growth
62
Strength of Will in a Character
80
Crisis Climax Resolution
230
GENERAL
243
Obligatory Scene
245
Exposition
250
Dialogue
254
Experimentation
261
The Timeliness of a Play
265
Entrances and Exits
268

Plot or CharacterWhich?
90
Characters Plotting Their Own Play
104
Pivotal Character
110
The Antagonist
116
Unity of Opposites
123
1
131
Cause and Effect
133
Static
143
Jumping
153
Rising
170
Movement
180
Foreshadowing Conflict
188
Point of Attack
192
Transition
201
Why Are Some Bad Plays Successful?
270
Melodrama
273
On Genius
274
What Is Art?A Dialogue
278
When You Write a Play
281
How to Get Ideas
285
Writing for Television
294
Conclusion
298
Plays Analyzed
299
Index
313
CONFLICT 129 131 133 143 153 170 180 188 192 201 230
314
299
315
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Sobre el autor (1972)

Lajos Egri was born some sixty years ago in the city of Eger, Hungary, and wrote his first three-act play at the age of ten. For more than thirty-five years he has written and directed plays in Europe and the United States. He was director of the Egri School of Writing in New York City for many years. He now resides in Los Angeles, California, where he is teaching and working with members of the film industry.

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