Publicity done right in an anti-rape campaign: double-page spread, pages glued to one another. After the reader forcefully separates them, the image above is revealed with the caption “if you have to use force, it’s rape”.
In the West, plot is commonly thought to revolve around conflict: a confrontation between two or more elements, in which one ultimately dominates the other. The standard three- and five-act plot structures—which permeate Western media—have conflict written into their very foundations. A “problem” appears near the end of the first act; and, in the second act, the conflict generated by this problem takes center stage. Conflict is used to create reader involvement even by many post-modern writers, whose work otherwise defies traditional structure.
The necessity of conflict is preached as a kind of dogma by contemporary writers’ workshops and Internet “guides” to writing. A plot without conflict is considered dull; some even go so far as to call it impossible. This has influenced not only fiction, but writing in general—arguably even philosophy. Yet, is there any truth to this belief? Does plot necessarily hinge on conflict? No. Such claims are a product of the West’s insularity. For countless centuries, Chinese and Japanese writers have used a plot structure that does not have conflict “built in”, so to speak. Rather, it relies on exposition and contrast to generate interest. This structure is known as kishōtenketsu.
LET ME TELL YOU A THING ABOUT SHIRLEY TEMPLE
Not only did this ABSURDLY ADORABLE little superstar pretty much singlehandedly save Fox and the movie industry during the Great Depression, she also
- was one of the first (possibly the first) white actress to hold hands with a black man on screen as half of the first interracial dance couple on screen.
- was largely responsible for making breast cancer okay to talk about after she had a press conference about her own mastectomy
- became president of the Multiple Sclerosis Society and co-founded the International Federation of Multiple Sclerosis Societies, because her brother had MS
- was the first female Chief of Protocol in US Government history
- served as a US ambassador during the fall of Communism and was pretty much an all around international BADASS
And according to her husband, she was always true to herself. “Over 38 years I have participated in her life 24 hours a day through thick and thin, traumatic situations, exultant situations, and I feel she has only one personality. She would be catastrophic for the psychiatric profession. You can wake her up in the middle of the night and she has the same personality everybody knows. What everybody has seen for 60 years is the bedrock.” (x)
Shirley Temple is hands down the most legendary child star of all time and she grew up to be a total BAMF. Rest in peace, Curly Top.
photo credit: this awesome blog