© 2015

The Fairytale and Plot Structure


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xix
  2. Terence Patrick Murphy
    Pages 1-12
  3. Terence Patrick Murphy
    Pages 29-33
  4. Terence Patrick Murphy
    Pages 34-50
  5. Terence Patrick Murphy
    Pages 51-64
  6. Terence Patrick Murphy
    Pages 65-82
  7. Terence Patrick Murphy
    Pages 83-92
  8. Terence Patrick Murphy
    Pages 93-103
  9. Terence Patrick Murphy
    Pages 118-128
  10. Terence Patrick Murphy
    Pages 129-140
  11. Terence Patrick Murphy
    Pages 141-149
  12. Terence Patrick Murphy
    Pages 157-160
  13. Terence Patrick Murphy
    Pages 161-176
  14. Back Matter
    Pages 177-204

About this book


This book offers a detailed exploration of the plot genotype, the functional structure behind the plots of classical fairy tales. By understanding how plot genotypes are used, the reader or creative writer will obtain a much better understanding of many other types of fiction, including short stories, dramatic texts and Hollywood screenplays.


Aristotle character action fairy tale Joseph Campbell Hollywood screenplay narratology poetics plot function Vladimir Propp Russian Formalism stylistics drama fiction structure

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Yonsei UniversitySouth Korea

About the authors

Terence Patrick Murphy is Full Professor of Rhetoric and Composition in the English Department at Yonsei University, South Korea. He was educated at the University of Toronto and Merton College, Oxford, where he wrote his doctoral dissertation on the history of the little magazine in England. He has published essays in such journals as the Journal of Narrative Theory; Narrative; Language and Literature and Style. His major research interest is the stylistics of short fiction and the semiotics of film screenplays

Bibliographic information


'Terence Patrick Murphy's book makes a fundamental contribution to narratology. By combining linguistics, philology, philosophy and folk studies, and thanks to a huge knowledge of the critical literature, Murphy thoroughly investigates the structure and the limits of Propp's major work. This book is recommended to everybody interested in the study of narrative and theory of literature.' Luciano Vitacolonna, University of Chieti-Pescara, Italy

'In this book, Professor Murphy challenges one of Vladimir Propp's central tenets that 31 action types constitute the vocabulary from which, in a canonical sequence, genuine tale plots can be composed. By comparing such sequences to genotypes, he offers a rich set of counterexamples which call for an unbiased reconsideration.' Sándor Darányi,

University of Borås, Sweden