What is characterisation?

Characterisation is the way authors create characters and make them believable. When writing about texts, it is easy to treat characters as real people. Try to remember that the author is creating characters using language.

Think about the set of characters in a text:

  • What are the characters like?
  • How you know this?
  • What do the characters say (dialogue)?
  • How are they described?
  • How are they seen by other characters?
  • What happens to them at the end of their story?
Wedding scene in winter featuring Colin Firth and Jennifer Ehle as Mr and Mrs Darcy from BBC Adaptation of Pride and Prejudice (1995).
Mr Darcy and Elizabeth Bennet fom Jane Austen's novel Pride and Prejudice are widely recognised fictional characters