Antagonists in the literature is defined as the character or the group of various characters that stands in opposition to protagonist that is the main character. The term antagonist is derived from Greek word antagonistēs that means the opponent or competitor. Moreover, the antagonist is the chief opponent of the main character and it can be identified that every good story must have an antagonist. It is common in nature to refer to the antagonist as the villain against whom the hero fights as it will be helpful for them in saving himself or the others. In different cases, the antagonist may exist within protagonist and it causes the inner kind of conflict or moral conflict inside their mind as well.
The inner kind of conflict is the main and chief theme in the different literary aspects and the different examples of the antagonists are as follows:
A classical kind of instance of antagonist in the literature is of King Creon in Sophocles’ tragedy Antigone and in the respective scenario, the main function of the antagonist is obstructing progress of the lead character through the different kinds of evil actions and plots. In the respective literature, the Antigone, the main protagonist tries to struggle against King Creon who plays the antagonist in the literature.
The main aspect was to showcase her efforts as to provide her brother a respectful kind of burial. Through the help of the different kinds of evil plotting and designs, Creon tried in hampering her in the respective attempt through announcing that her brother was the traitor and he should not be left with any kind of elements as well. Therefore, from the respective instance, it can be identified that it is the protagonist and antagonist conflict that becomes the major part of the story.
The different types of antagonists are as follows:
Evil is the aspect wherein the evils will be considered as evils outright and whether through the nature, the characters are partially or completely evil in nature. Hannibal Lector is one of the prime examples of the antagonist who played evil role.
Opposing is the other type wherein everyday kind of character can be fulfilling antagonist role through opposing the protagonist and they can be mixture of both or good or bad in nature.
Superior is the next type wherein superior antagonist can be anyone or anything which exists naturally and it helps in dominating the protagonists. The society, religion or the nature can be fit for the role of superior antagonist.
Internal is the last type wherein the different internal type of antagonists is often less of the entire main character and they can be more the aspect of the personality. It is caused mainly due to the consciences, desires or the other subconscious motivations or reactions of the protagonists’ present. The internal kind of antagonists are present in creating conflicts within rather than without aspect and it often goes unnoticed in nature.
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