Getting to know George Polti’s definition of 36 dramatic situations.
Select and watch one of the video links here. Find the essential dramatic situation the clip is dealing with.
Try to find only one. Also, name the parties in the dramatic conflict:
Example of an answer:
– The short film deals with the situation of ”Mistaken Jealosy”.
– The One legged man is the The Jealous One,
– The woman in the bear suit is the Object of Whose Possession he Is Jealous;
– the man in the tiger suit is the Supposed Accomplice and
– the man dressed as a hunter is the Author of the Mistake.”
Note: for some clips you may have to look for more info about the issue (google it, baby).
George Polti’s 36 Dramatic Situations
3. Vengeance of a crime
4. Vengeance taken for kindred upon kindred
7. Falling prey to cruelty or misfortune
9. Daring enterprise
11. The Enigma
13. Enmity of kinsmen
14. Rivalry of kinsmen
15. Murderous adultery
17. Fatal imprudence
18. Involuntary crimes of love
19. Slaying of a kinsman unrecognised
20. Self-sacrificing for an ideal
21. Self-sacrifice for kindred
22. All sacrificed for a passion
23. Necessity of sacrificing loved ones
24. Rivalry of superior and inferior
26. Crimes of love
27. Discovery of the dishonour of a loved one
28. Obstacles to love
29. An enemy loved
31. Conflict with a god
32. Mistaken jealousy
33. Erroneous judgement
35. Recovery of a lost one
36. Loss of loved ones
Find Polti’s book ”The 36 Dramatic Situations” here to understand more:
Make a video clip of 1-3 minutes that presents the dramatic situation of ”Erroneous judgement” – see George Polti’s presentation below. Focus on presenting the conflict though the characters, making it clear to the audience on what the situation is.
(The Mistaken One; the Victim of the Mistake; the Cause or Author of the Mistake; the Guilty Person.) (Any sort of mistaken judgment may here be un- derstood, even though committed only in the thought of one person to the detriment of another.) A (1) False Suspicion Where Faith is Necessary: 'The Serpent Woman" by Gozzi; "L'Etudiant Pauvre" (Milloecker, 1889). One of the facets of "Henry V" is connected somewhat remotely with this situation, the incomprehension of the young prince's real character by the witnesses of his disorders. Dumas pere has represented Henri de Navarre as misunder- stood in the same way by his entourage. (2) False Suspicion (in which the jealousy is not without reason) of a Mistress: Part of "Diane" by Augier; "Marie Stuart" by Alfieri. (3) False Suspicions Aroused by a Misunderstood Attitude of a Loved One: "The Raven" by Gozzi; "Hypsipile" by Metastasio; "Theodora" (Sardou, 1884); part of "La Reine Fiammetta"; "Le Voleur" (Bernstein, 1906); "Les Grands" (Weber and Basset, 1909); "Coeur Maternel" (Franck, 1911). (4) By Indifference: "Crainquebille" (France, 1909); "le Vierge" (Vallette). B (1) False Suspicions Drawn Upon Oneself to Save a Friend: "Aimer Sans Savoir Qui" by Lope; "Mme. Ambros" (Widor, 1885). (2) they Fall Upon the Innocent: "Siroes" by Metastasio; "La Grande Iza" (Bouvier, 1882); "Le Fiacre No. 13" and "Gavroche" (Dornay, 1887 and 1888); "L' Affaire des Poisons" (Sardou, 1907); "Les Pierrots" (Grillet, 1908). Upon the Innocent Hus- band of the Guilty One: "La Criminelle" (Delacour, 1882). (3) The Same Case as 2, but in Which the Inno- cent had a Guilty Intention: "Jean Cevenol" (Fraisse, 1883). In Which the Innocent Believes Himself Guilty: "Le Roi de 1'Argent" (Milliet, 1885); "Poupees Electriques" (Marinetti). (4) A Witness to the Crime, in the Interest of a Loved One, Lets Accusation Fall Upon the Inno- cent: "Le Secret de la Terreuse" (Busnach, 1889). C (1) The Accusation is Allowed to Fall Upon an Enemy: "La Pieuvre" (Morel, 1885). (2) The Error is Provoked by an Enemy: "The Palamedes" of Sophocles and of Euripides; "LeVentre de Paris" (Zola, 1887); "Le Roi Soleil" (Bernede, 1911); "L'Homme a Deux Tetes" (Forest, 1910). This nuance alone, it will be observed, attracted the Greek tragedians, who were, so to speak, tormented by a vague conception of the lago of a later age and who tried, in a succession of distorted types, to produce it; we seem, in these works, to be assisting at the birth of the future Devil; of the evangelic Judas and at that of the type of Jesus in Prometheus and Dionysos. This nuance C 2 seems to me a singularly fine one; it is, for instance, that of the "anonymous letter," and it will be admitted that a more admirably repugnant gargoyle cannot be imagined than the creature who crouches with pen in claw and malignant smile, to begin such a piece of work! (3) The Mistake is Directed Against the Victim by Her Brother: (here is included also the Twelfth, "Hatred of Kinsmen") : "The Brigands" by Schiller; "Don Garzia" by Alfieri. D (1) False Suspicion Thrown by the Real Culprit Upon One of His Enemies: Corneille's "Clitandre/' and "Sapho" (Gounod, 1884); "Catharine la Batarde" (Bell, 1881). (2) Thrown by the Real Culprit Upon the Second Victim Against Whom He Has Plotted from the Beginning: "Le Crime d'un Autre" (Arnold and Renauld, 1908). This is pure Machiavellianism, obtain- ing the death of the second victim through an unjust punishment for the murder of the first. Add to this the closest relationship between the two victims and the deceived judge, and we have all these emotions assem- bled: discovery of the death of a relative; supposed discovery of an impious hatred between two relatives; belief even in a second case of crime, aggravated this time by a scheme of revolt; finally the duty of con- demning a loved one believed to be guilty. This plot then, is a masterly one, since it groups, under the im- pulsion of an ambition or a vengeance, four other Situations. As for the "Machiavellianism" which has set it all in motion, it consists, for him who employs it, precisely in the method which is habitual to writers, a method here transferred to a single character; he ab- stracts himself, so to speak, from the drama, and, like the author, inspires in other characters the necessary feelings, unrolls before their steps the indispensable circumstances, in order that they may mechanically move toward the denouement he desires. Thus is de- veloped the "Artaxerce" of Metastasio. Suppress the part of the villian, and suppose for a moment that the author has planned the denouement desired by this traitor; the bringing about of the most cruel results from a "supposed fratricide" and the "duty of condemning a son." The author cannot otherwise combine his means to produce it. The type of the Villain (who has successively appeared in many guises) is nothing else than the author himself, masked in black, and knotting together two or three dramatic situations. He belongs, this type, to the family of the poetic Prologue, of the "Deus ex machina" (although more admissible) of the Orator of the parabases, of the Molieresque Valet, and of the Theorist (the good doctor, clergyman, journalist, "family friend"). He is in short the old Narrator of the monodramas. Nothing could be more naif, consequently, than this creature, whose unconvincing artificiality has spoiled many a scene. (3) False Suspicion thrown Upon a Rival: "Diana" (Paladilhe, 1885); "L'Ogre" (Marthold, 1890); "La Boscotte" (Mme. Maldagne, 1908). (4) Thrown Upon One Innocent, Because He Has Refused to be an Accomplice: "Valentinian" by Beaumont and Fletcher; "Aetius" by Metastasio. (5) Thrown by a Deserted Mistress Upon a Lover Who Left Her Because He Would Not Deceive Her Husband: "Roger-la-Honte" (Mary, 1888). (6) Struggle to Rehabilitate Oneself and to Avenge a Judicial Error Purposely Caused: "La De"gringolade" (Desnard, 1881); the end of "Fiacre No. 13."
Genres and situations.
Make a video clip of 1-3 minutes, where you deal with 2 dramatic situations by George Polti. The idea is to present a twist in a story through the change of one dramatic situation to another. Example: (rivalry + slaying a kinsman unrecognized = could be a story of two masked knights in a fight at war, the other wins, takes of the helmet of the slayed knight, discovers he has just killed his brother.)
In addition to this, in your clip study the semantic and syntatic components that define a genre. See http://www.tc.umn.edu/~rbeach/teachingmedia/module7/2.htm for help. Examine how elements of genres can be used as a story-telling device. Select one genre that supports your story.