The Classical Plot and the Invention of Western Narrative


This is the story of how Western literature first developed its distinctive taste for the kind of tight, economical plotting still employed in modern fiction and cinema. The book shows how this taste was formed in Greco-Roman antiquity out of a series of revolutions in storytelling, centered on Homer, early tragedy, Hellenistic comedy, and the Greek love-novels of the early centuries AD. Along the way, it draws on cognitive science and current literary theory to offer a resilient yet accessible new theory of what "plot" is and how it works.

Additional information

Publisher: Place of publication:
  • Cambridge, England
Publication year:
  • 2000


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