Dramatic conflict

The dramatic conflict is the┬ápersistent tension, the driving force, that produces the content of the story. According to Robert McKee (1999: 210), “Nothing moves forward in a story except through conflict.”

The dramatic conflict might be described as equivalent to the nub of the problem in design conventions or the striking opportunity the designer identifies from research.

Dramatic conflict can be seen as a struggle or contest, bringing into view an agonistic conception of narrative, in which protagonist and antagonist are engaged in a prolonged contestation.


Austin, T. (2012). Culture-led city regeneration: design methodologies. In: Cumulus. Helsinki. Available from http://cumulushelsinki2012.org/cumulushelsinki2012.org/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/Culture-led-City-Regeneration-Design-Methodologies.pdf [Accessed 3 February 2014].

McKee, R. (1999) Story: substance, structure, style and the principles of screenwriting. London: Methuen


edited 24 June, 2016 by Allan Parsons

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