Tropes & Clichés and other blocks of storytelling

I write this because I believe that English uses the word “trope” in a different way than in French. It’s a rare word here, and I had to check in dictionaries to understand it.

I hear that in the world of telling stories, a trope is like a “little structure”, linked to other words : conventions, stereotypes, clichés, but also “twists and turns”.

  1. Big tropes, archetypes with capitals like : The Chosen One. The Artifact of Power. The Damsel in Distress. The Knight in Shining Armor.
  2. Typical narrative structures like : enemies to lovers, tough guy secretly sensitive, forbidden love,
  3. Situations or plot elements : “there’s only one bed”

 

It leads to many questions & paths :

  • Tropes by categories (ex : Fantasy Tropes : quest, dark lord, hero, good vs evil, blah blah)
  • Clichés are boring, aren’t tropes boring?
  • New tropes?
  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Clich%C3%A9 Clichés are irritating, right?
  • Platitudes. Stereotypes.
  • Tropes are good because familiarity.
  • When tropes are predictable to the point of boredom.
  • Are predictable tropes clichés?
  • Tropes as metaphors.

 

Well, it’s too big. Creativity and storytelling, finding the frontier between good tropes and boring ones, etc. I need a book. You have an idea?

Thanks for reading!

 

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The Augmented Reality – when you go nowhere with fun

OK I’m french. My english is a frenglish, it’s rusty and wobbly, et voilà. Try me, though. I’ll do my best. I promise. If sometimes it’s too bad, just laugh at me or roll you eyes.

Augmented Reality is a real-time view of the physical world, with new elements (mostly graphic) added by computer, etc – thanks wikipedia – et voilà !

Now consider your reality as already augmentée. The game is now simple : bend over every human activity and flatten it to “just what it is”. De-augment it. Diminish it to its reality. C’est le contraire !

Then you can categorize things.

Leasures which are just dragging-moving people from A to B (climbing mountains, running in stadiums, Tour de France), or worse, from A to A and every activity “moving in circles” (racing cars, haha). In fact, every sport seems suddenly a bit stupid, and you don’t understand why some guys are throwing balls and run around – in baseball or football. Whatever. If you kitesurf or swim in a ABABABA trajectory you suddenly stop, realising the nonsensicall of doing “this” (jumping around on the beach or moving your arms and legs in the water to go nowhere). Etc

The kitsch loses immediatly all funny taste, it’s becoming what it is : an ugly boring old snap reality. Religion becomes strange words and activities (all the ritual things) towards a silent “God” (does he talk to you ?). Every picture you’ll see for advertising, with a top-model, will have the taste of what it is : fake smiles and words trying to sale you bouleshite. Etc.

You got it, I know : just flatten things, kill the augmented reality, look at what it is. Tout simplement.

Consequences : No movies any more. There is no Braveheart, just an Australian actor running in the grass. No novels either, because you now feel the writer “inventing” little stories to distract you.

Tool : Well it’s just a gaaaaame. If you do this all the time you’ll become like Shopenhauer or Cioran. Don’t do this. Use it when necessary. You’ll suddenly find time to do really simple things you can not de-augment, like eating un bon cassoulet or caressing your girlfriend’s legs. What ?

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