What does ''plot action'' mean? Such as, for example, describe two plot actions to support your theory of the theme for Lord of the Flies.I'm just confused on the definition of ''plot action.'' If...

What does ''plot action'' mean? Such as, for example, describe two plot actions to support your theory of the theme for Lord of the Flies.

I'm just confused on the definition of ''plot action.'' If anyone could clarify for me, that would be great. Thanks.

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e-martin | College Teacher | (Level 1) Educator Emeritus

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This term refers to the action and actual events that takes place in the novel, as opposed to character development, internal happenings, and exposition. 

Though the term is somewhat redundant, it implicitly conveys the notion that the text contains multiple elements, only some of which can be properly seen as action.

These elements of actions are often understood as the plot of a novel. However, some people consider the term "plot" to describe not only action-oriented events in a text but all the distinct events of a text. 

In literature, [plot] is the arrangement of events to achieve an intended effect consisting of a series of carefully devised and interrelated actions that progresses through a struggle of opposing forces...

This means "plot", as a term, can describe dreams, conversations, and moments of reflection. The term "plot action" then distinguishes between non-physical moments in the text and physical ones. 

Ralph's episodes of confusion are part of the generally defined "plot" of this novel, but not part of the "plot action". Piggy's death is part of the "plot action". The description of the island is not part of the "plot" or "plot action".

Plot also differs from story in a particular way. 

[Plot] is different from story or story line which is the order of events as they occur. 

This distinction can be particularly helpful in discussing works that use broken time-lines, flashbacks, and narrative techniques of this sort. 

Sources:

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