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Chemistry LibreTexts

Theme as Argument: Develping Argument with the Structure of a Novel's Plot

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    186251
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    • The author crafts a plot structure to create expectations, increase suspense, and develop characters. The pacing of events can make a novel either predictable or riveting. Foreshadowing and flashbacks allow the author to defy the constraints of time. Sometimes an author can confound a simple plot by telling stories within stories. In a conventional work of fiction, the peak of the story’s conflict—the climax—is followed by the resolution, or denouement, in which the effects of that climactic action are presented.
    • The author crafts a plot structure to create expectations, increase suspense, and develop characters. The pacing of events can make a novel either predictable or riveting. Foreshadowing and flashbacks allow the author to defy the constraints of time. Sometimes an author can confound a simple plot by telling stories within stories. In a conventional work of fiction, the peak of the story’s conflict—the climax—is followed by the resolution, or denouement, in which the effects of that climactic action are presented.
    • The structure of the plot can help to fully support an argument but if the structure is poor, the argument will not be fully supported and be underdeveloped. Poor structure could also make the story and argument too confusing for the reader.

    • The Great Gatsby has a remarkable structure. Chapter 5 provides the emotional center of the drama: when Gatsby reunites with Daisy, when Nick experiences a grand foreboding, and when Daisy’s voice becomes a “deathless song.” Some chapters exhibit parallels. For example, chapters 2 and 8 are physically violent turning points, with grotesque landscapes, dust, and ashes. 
    • As you read Chapter 7, I will pose some questions on the side for you to consider in order for you to understand the story but you do not have to directly answer them. Instead, consider if anything that happens within this chapter is important to the development of the argument. When you have finished reading, be prepared to develop a timeline of important events in the novel that you think have helped to develop Fitzgerald's argument.

    Works Cited

    "C² Talk." C Talk. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2014.

    "The Big Read." The Great Gatsby. N.p., n.d. Web. 24 Apr. 2014.