Character vs. Character One of the simplest forms of conflict comes when one character is in opposition to another. Sometimes writers show this type of conflict between a villain and a hero, other times the conflict may take place between two sympathetic characters with opposing points of view. Character vs. Self Moral dilemmas are a commonly used source of conflict. businesman thinking image by forca from Fotolia. com
Sometimes the conflict in literature does not come from external forces, but emerges through a moral dilemma within the character. In “Of Mice and Men” the main character, George Milton, has a conflict within himself about how to handle his disabled friend’s care. He struggles between doing what is best for his friend and what is best for those around him, which becomes the central piece of conflict in the story. Character vs. Nature Natural disasters can cause conflict in literature. er en nb image by Jorge Chaves from Fotolia. com Character vs. Nature conflict occurs when the character in the novel must battle some natural element, often a natural disaster. Character vs. Society A character is placed in opposition with society when his views or actions go against those of a dominant group. Relationships Conflicts between two people are known as relationship conflicts. These conflicts typically involve mis-communication and disagreements.
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In literature, a relationship conflict is typically known as man versus man, meaning that one person stands in opposition to a single other person. These conflicts often involve enemies rather than friends, but can involve any two people in conflict. Conflict of Interest Conflicts of interest typically resolve around psychological issues. Psychological conflicts of interest occur when one party is unable to be impartial. For example, if a lawyer is friends with the judge, there is a conflict of interest because the judge is likely to side in favor of his friend.
Procedural conflicts occur when people argue about the best way to solve a problem or when different methods help different people. For example, two police officers may debate whether they should interrogate or investigate. A substantive conflict involves resources, such as money or time. For example, two friends both want to buy the same discounted car so they can save money. Structural Conflict In literature, a structural conflict is known as man versus society. With structural conflict, one person faces opposition from a larger organization.
For example, a doctor may want to treat a patient, but the hospital will not allow him to admit the patient due to a lack of health insurance. Other conflicts involve physical constraints. For example, a woman may want to visit a friend during lunch but lacks the time to travel to her friend’s office. If the conflict involves natural disasters, it is known as a man versus nature conflict. This includes stories of the apocalypse, captains fighting heavy seas or people who must journey through a desert. Value Conflicts
Value conflicts involve one person whose values do not align with the values of another person or organization. For example, two friends may disagree with the morality of the killing of animals for food. In many cases, people with value conflicts can happily interact. If the conflict is too extreme, the people may resent each other. If a person is in conflict with his own values, this is known as a man versus self conflict. For example, a man may want to cheat at a poker game but he worries that his actions are immoral.