Monday, April 13, 2015

The Queen Died of Grief

"The king died and then the queen died" is a story.
"The king died and then the queen died of grief" is a plot.
~ E. M. Forster ~

What always strikes me about the "grief" in Forster's second sentence is not only that it introduces causality but that it reveals the queen's emotional state. Narrative requires conflict, and the queen is a conflicted character. She is grieving; and we know what that means: denial, anger, bargaining, depression. She is in conflict with herself, and with forces larger than herself, such as Nature, God and Death. Now we have a plot.

Forster's brief analysis of royal death and grief always makes me think of that classic exercise in cause - effect analysis: the Drawbridge Problem.

You can read the Drawbridge Exercise
and further cause - effect analysis from my son Ben
on my current post

~ "Causality: King Then Queen" ~

@ The Fortnightly Kitti Carriker:
A Fortnightly [every 14th & 28th] Literary Blog of
Connection & Coincidence; Custom & Ceremony

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