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What is the definition of characterization?

The definition of characterization is the act of creating a convincing artistic representation of an individual, particularly within a work of drama or fiction.

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Characterization

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Last Updated May 25, 2023.

Characterization is creating an effective artistic representation of an individual, particularly within a work of drama or fiction. Writers accomplish characterization through all aspects of a written work, including characters’ dialogue, thoughts, behavior, choices, physical appearance, etc. 

Characterization derives from the Greek word charaktēr, meaning “graving tool, graving tool’s mark,” from charattein (“to engrave”).

In her novel Little Women, Louisa May Alcott characterizes the distinct appearances and personalities of the four March sisters through variations in dialogue, behavior, and physical description.

see: flat and round charactersdirect characterizationindirect characterizationcharacterallegoryfableplotthesis 

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