Yes, I’m on another infographic kick. This one is from The Writing Café and is Joseph Campbell’s The Hero’s Journey. His theory has pervaded storytelling and writing and folklore for years.
“The concept is that most stories throughout the world follow a simple narrative pattern. At its most basic, the theory states that:
The Protagonist is called to adventure.
The Protagonist must undergo trials or great hardship.
The Protagonist masters the conflict and returns home.”
Sound familiar? It’s the pattern for Star Wars, Harry Potter, and the Odyssey (because I need to include SOMETHING classical in there).
Of course, many stories do NOT meet that structure – Dune, Watchmen, Ulysses, and (even if it is a film, it is a GREAT example of where Campbell fails) Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon.
Why? Because one of the biggest critiques of the theory of the “monomyth” is that, if you examine it closely, Campbell’s theory follows a very Eurocentric, sexist (and usually now very cliché) view of what a story looks like.
So…find a better way to tell a story.