A literary technique, subplot is a secondary plot, or a strand of the main plot that runs parallel to it and helps it. It is typically found in plays, novels, quick stories, television shows, and movies. It is additionally referred to as a “minor tale,” or as “B” or “C” story. Its purpose is to add complexity and intensity to the story, and thereby will increase tension – a nation of excessive interest and suspense approximately activities in a story. Not handiest does it show various components of the characters, connecting the readers with them, but it is also a tale inside a story.
Examples of Subplot in Literature
Example #1: Romeo and Juliet (By William Shakespeare)
William Shakespeare has incorporated subplots frequently in his performs, inclusive of in Romeo and Juliet, that is a love story of the two leading title characters. While a subplot runs within the shape of an old competition between their families (the Capulets and the Montagues), the struggle will increase because of the restrictions placed on younger lovers’ romance similarly provides to the drama within the story.
There are many scenes depicting younger Capulets (Juliet’s pals and cousins) preventing with young Montagues (along with Romeo’s friends), and a few scenes depicting older Capulets and Montagues discussing hatred towards one another. Thus, this subplot performs a vital role, else the critical romantic plot would have been everyday as opposed to dramatic.
Example #2: The Great Gatsby (By F. Scott Fitzgerald)
In his famous novel The Great Gatsby, F. Scott Fitzgerald has shown his major character, Jay Gatsby, turning into an in a single day success, regardless of having no circle of relatives inheritance. It turns into clean that Gatsby has earned precise fortune thru bootlegging — the unlawful guidance and selling of liquor. He, on the other hand, wastes his wealth on useless and extravagant parties.
He does this to seek enjoyment with friends, along with a lovely married woman, Daisy Buchanan, whose business enterprise he enjoys very much. However, whilst Daisy’s husband Tom learns Gatsby is engaged in illegal activities, he suggests his suspicion in an excessive argument by using accusing Gatsby of illegally selling alcohol thru their drug stores. This subplot about prohibition adds depth to the main plot..
Example #3: King Lear (By William Shakespeare)
William Shakespeare, in his famous play King Lear, describes the main plot: King Lear disowns Cordelia, his faithful and dependable daughter, and divides his entire kingdom among his untrue and treacherous daughters, Regan and Goneril. However, the subplot includes the Earl of Gloucester and his sons, Edmund, an illegitimate son, and Edgar, a tricky man.
Edgar may be very cunning, tricking his father into wondering his faithful son Edgar is engaging in intrigue towards him. The earl forces Edgar to leave. This subplot points in the direction of primary occasions inside the plot, which includes neither father may want to differentiate among their faithful and treacherous children. Nevertheless, the occasions get mixed up, and Regan and Goneril start falling for Edmund, while he turns into the Earl, and Edgar ties the knot with Cordelia.
Example #4: Great Expectations (By Charles Dickens)
Charles Dickens’ novel Great Expectations is a big web with a sequence of subplots. One of these subplots is Pip’s acquaintance with Herbert, as he cares greater for his friend’s price range than his own. Pip even asks for money from Mrs. Havisham to assist Herbert. Another subplot involves Pip’s plan to get Abel Magwitch in another country with the help of Wemmick.
Example #5: The Lord of Rings (By J. R. R. Tolkien)
J. R. R. Tolkien’s novel The Lord of Ring includes an amazing instance of a subplot. The principal plot concerns the quest of Frodo to move lower back to the ring, while the secondary plot actions round Legolas and Aragon’s adventures in their pursuit to protect settlements while destroying the Orcs’ armies. Another subplot issues the get away of Merry and Pippin from the Orcs. By the end, these 3 subplots weave into the primary storyline.
Function of Subplot
The feature of subplot is to explain hidden impulses at the back of moves of the principal characters. While this secondary strand has two effects on a storyline, in general it ties immediately to the principle plot and characters, placing an immediate impact on conditions and characters.
However, an alternative way is that subplots run parallel to the main story. This serves as a contrast to explain choices of the leading characters. Usually, subplots create justifications for movements, and sudden actions taken by protagonists and antagonists. In addition, they add a back-tale, or reminiscing element, to a main plot without at once affecting the tempo of action. Subplots additionally provide contrast to the events of the principle story with a view to make it greater meaningful and intricate.
Popular Literary Devices
- Ad Hominem
- Deus Ex Machina
- Double Entendre
- Flash Forward
- Half Rhyme
- Internal Rhyme
- Line Break
- Non Sequitur
- Pathetic Fallacy
- Poetic Justice
- Point of View
- Red Herring
- Tragic Flaw