Meaning of Antagonism

The first thing to know is that the term antagonism has its etymological origin in the Greek, specifically derived from “antagonism”. A word this that is the result of the sum of three very well differentiated elements:
-The prefix “anti-“, which is used to indicate “opposite” or “opposite”.
-The noun “agon”, which is equivalent to “combat”.
-The suffix “-ismo”, which is used as a synonym for “doctrine”.

The concept of antagonism refers to an opposition, rivalry or competition that exists between two people, groups, entities or ideas.

For example: “The antagonism between Batman and Joker is one of the most fascinating in the world of comics”, “The rivalries in football are healthy, but the antagonism between two teams should never provoke situations of violence”, ” I don’t think there is an antagonism between our proposal and the project presented by the company ”.

Antagonism is a common element of the narrative. The central character of the story is called the protagonist: the character who opposes his objectives is the antagonist. The antagonist (who is usually the villain of the story), thus, makes it difficult to carry out the plans of the protagonist (the hero). This antagonism constitutes the knot of the narration, which is only resolved in the outcome.

It is established that to create a good antagonist, the following fundamental keys must be taken into consideration:
-It has to remove the reader’s emotions, either for better or for worse.
-You must have great strength at the mental and personality level.
-It is important that it is not indifferent and that it does not pass without causing reactions.
-It is convenient to choose in each story the type of antagonist that is considered most appropriate. And there are different classes: the psychopath, who is the one who is present in police or terror works; the moral, who simply had the bad luck to live a hard past experience; the hypocrite, who pretends to be innocent when in reality he is a being with really clear ideas.

Superheroes usually have one or several antagonists: the Joker (Joker), the Penguin, the Riddle (Enigma or Riddler) and Two Faces are characters that exert an antagonism to Batman, to name a case. Superman, meanwhile, has antagonists like Lex Luthor, Doomsday, and Darkseid.

In the field of biology, antagonism refers to a type of interaction that causes a substance or an organism to be unable to carry out an activity when in contact with another. Biological antagonism occurs when an antibiotic controls a bacterium, to name a case of this type of interaction.

However, we cannot forget that the term antagonist is also used in the field of dentistry, to refer to a dental piece that has to be closed to bite; or in physiology. In the latter case, the antagonist is the muscle that acts against the movement of another muscle.