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  • 1 University of Gloucestershire Please ask the editor of the journal.
  • | 2 University of Gloucestershire Please ask the editor of the journal.
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Forms of narrative such as drama allow for the transmission of information to large audiences. The drama therefore has to contain structural elements that are easily accessible to the viewer. The structures of 10 plays by William Shakespeare were studied and shown to exhibit small world properties, in that any node (character) in a network is connected to any other node by only a few intermediate steps. It is suggested that the number of characters that are present within each scene reflect similar numbers to those of observed human support cliques.  This might reflect possible cognitive limits, as when there is an increase in the number of characters within a play rather than add new characters to a scene Shakespeare has instead created new scenes, thus maintaining the scene clique size. These scene cliques are connected by a series of weak links (keystone characters) that maintain the flow of information within a growing network of characters. It is suggested that this might provide a useful basis for further research into the structure, purpose and development of drama.

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Journal of Cultural and Evolutionary Psychology
Language English
Size  
Year of
Foundation
2003
Publication
Programme
changed title
Volumes
per Year
 
Issues
per Year
 
Founder Akadémiai Kiadó
Founder's
Address
H-1117 Budapest, Hungary 1516 Budapest, PO Box 245.
Publisher Akadémiai Kiadó
Publisher's
Address
H-1117 Budapest, Hungary 1516 Budapest, PO Box 245.
Responsible
Publisher
Chief Executive Officer, Akadémiai Kiadó
ISSN 1589-5254 (Print)
ISSN 1589-7397 (Online)