A story's character is intrinsically tied to the story itself. Still, in discussing the art of writing, we tend to think of character as something that exists in isolation. For example, think of a young mother with ruby lips, long black hair, and olive skin. Her oval brown eyes lovingly fix on those of her six-year-old daughter, who gazes back in joy. In this worship area the priest has spoken of peace on earth and now the mother and child lock in song together because both know the words: "Alleluia, Alleluia, Alleluia."
Think of this pair in a variety of story settings to appreciate the profound effect of story context on our impression of characters and their significance. For example, this pair could be wife and daughter of a high official in government. Or perhaps the family of a multimillionaire business executive. These are comfortable settings and suggest a charmed life for both characters. Unless, of course, the woman was the widow.
In another circumstance, think of the young mother and daughter as they sit in a huge church to escape the cold of the day. They sing Alleluia as they celebrate the warmth of the building before returning to their cardboard shelter under a bridge in a poverty-stricken neighborhood.
In yet another view we see them in a shanty-town's temporary meeting hall where they continue months of awaiting the return of father. One year ago he ventured with 50 young men to penetrate the border of a wealthy country, promising to return for the pair once he secures citizenship and employment.
Does character change with changes in the story’s context? Hopefully, with these examples, a writer can truly appreciate the importance of story context when it comes to character.
Handbook of Research on Examining Global Peacemaking in the Digital Age, Bruce L. Cook (ed.)
Violent behavior has become deeply integrated into modern society and it is an unavoidable aspect of human nature. Examining peacemaking strategies through a critical and academic perspective can assist in resolving violence in societies around the world.
The Handbook of Research on Examining Global Peacemaking in the Digital Age is a pivotal reference source for the latest research findings on the utilization of peacemaking in media, leadership, and religion. Featuring extensive coverage on relevant areas such as human rights, spirituality, and the Summer of Peace, this publication is an ideal resource for policymakers, universities and colleges, graduate-level students, and organizations seeking current research on the application of conflict resolution and international negotiation.
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We have developed a world peace website: www.wwpo.org
Publishing New Writers,
January, 2019 (no. 2001)
Dr. Bruce L. Cook
1407 Getzelman Drive
Elgin, IL 60123
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