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1. Absentation: Someone goes missing

 

Disciplines > Storytelling > Propp's Morphology of the Folk Tale > 1. Absentation: Someone goes missing

Description | Discussion | See also

 

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Next: 2. Interdiction: Hero is warned

 

Description

Symbol: β (beta)

A member of the family leaves the security of the home environment for some reason. This may be the hero or perhaps is some other member of the family that the hero will later need to rescue. In any case, this division of the cohesive family injects initial tension into the storyline.

Example

In Star Wars, R2D2 goes missing.

Discussion

The hero may also be introduced here, often being shown as an ordinary person. This allows the reader of the story to associate with the hero as being 'like me'. When the hero subsequently has their adventure, the reader is then drawn along, vicariously experiencing the same risks and resolution.

'Family' need not mean a genetic unit but can be any group who have some form of cohesion, whether it is an association, a group of friends or a town. The implication of 'family' is a deep cultural one of familiarity (note the same root!), comfort and safety.

See also

 

Previous: 0. Initial situation

Next: 2. Interdiction: Hero is warned

 

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