Antagonist

An antagonist (from Greek ἀνταγωνιστής - antagonistes, "opponent, competitor, enemy, rival")[1] is a character, group of characters, or institution, that represents the opposition against which the protagonist must contend. In other words, 'A person, or a group of people who oppose the main character, or the main characters.'[2] In the classic style of story where in the action consists of a hero fighting a villain, the two can be regarded as protagonist and antagonist, respectively.[3]

The antagonist may also represent a major threat or obstacle to the main character by their very existence, without necessarily deliberately targeting him or her.

Examples in both film and theatre include Lord Voldemort, the main antagonist in the Harry Potter series, who constantly battles the series' protagonist, Harry Potter, and Tybalt, an antagonist of Romeo and Juliet, who slays Mercutio and whose later death results in the exiling of the play's protagonist, Romeo.

See also

References

  1. ^ "Antagonist". Online Etymology Dictionary. http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?search=antagonist&searchmode=none. Retrieved 28 November 2010. 
  2. ^ About.com, Literature: Contemporary "Antagonist." Online. October 18, 2007.
  3. ^ The antagonist may not always be a person or persons. In some cases an antagonist may be a force, such as a tidal wave that destroyed a city, or a storm that is causing havoc, or even the conditions in a certain area that is causing a problem. An antagonist also may or may not create obstacles for the protagonist. See "The Elements of Literature". rscc.cc.tn.us. http://www.rscc.cc.tn.us/owl&writingcenter/OWL/ElementsLit.html. 

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  • antagonist — ANTAGONÍST, Ă, antagonişti, ste, adj. Care se află în antagonism (unul faţă de altul); antagonic. ♢ Contradicţie antagonistă = contradicţie antagonică. – Din fr. antagoniste, lat. antagonista. Trimis de ana zecheru, 28.02.2009. Sursa: DEX 98 … …   Dicționar Român

  • Antagonist — (griech. ανταγωνιστής, antagonistís, von αντι, anti, „gegen“ und άγω, ágo, „ich handle, bewege, führe“: „der Gegenhandelnde“, „der Gegenspieler“) bezeichnet: im allgemeinen einen Widersacher oder Gegner Antagonist (Literatur), der Gegenspieler… …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Antagonist — An*tag o*nist, n. [L. antagonista, Gr. ?; ? against + ? combatant, champion, fr. ?: cf. F. antagoniste. See {Antagonism}.] 1. One who contends with another, especially in combat; an adversary; an opponent. [1913 Webster] Antagonist of Heaven s… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Antagonist — An*tag o*nist, a. Antagonistic; opposing; counteracting; as, antagonist schools of philosophy. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Antagoníst — (grch.), Gegner, Widersacher. Antagonismus, Gegenwirkung, Gegensatz …   Kleines Konversations-Lexikon

  • Antagonist — Antagonist, so viel als Gegner, Widersacher, Feind …   Damen Conversations Lexikon

  • antagonist — index adversary, aggressor, assailant, contender, contestant, disputant, foe, rival Burton s Legal Thesaurus …   Law dictionary

  • antagonist — (n.) 1590s, from Fr. antagoniste (16c.) or directly from L.L. antagonista, from Gk. antagonistes competitor, opponent, rival, agent noun from antagonizesthai to struggle against, oppose, be a rival, from anti against (see ANTI (Cf. anti )) +… …   Etymology dictionary

  • antagonist — antagònist m DEFINICIJA 1. onaj koji istupa protiv koga; s oprečnih pozicija; suparnik, protivnik, opr. agonist 2. fiziol. sustav, mišić ili organ koji djeluje suprotno drugome, opr. sinergist 3. (mn) farm. lijekovi suprotna djelovanja u odnosu… …   Hrvatski jezični portal

  • antagonist — *opponent, adversary Analogous words: foe, *enemy: rival, competitor (see corresponding verbs at RIVAL): assailant, attacker (see corresponding verbs at ATTACK) Antonyms: supporter Contrasted words: ally, *partner, colleague …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • antagonist — [n] person causing problem adversary, angries*, bad person*, bandit*, competitor, contender, crip*, enemy, foe, match, opponent, opposer, opposite number*, oppugnant, rival; concept 412 Ant. ally, protagonist, supporter …   New thesaurus

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