Questions tagged [tropes]

For trope in the movie sense and their origins: universally defined images with deeper implications than their linguistic meanings. Not for the rhetoric figure.

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What is the origin of the plot device where a character changes negative views about someone after spending time with them?

I feel like this is a common story element. Someone has a negative view about a person/group of people, and their worldview is changed after they are forced to spend time with that person/group. This ...
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691 views

What is the earliest work with the time-loop trope?

The film "Groundhog Day" has a plot centered around a character whose day repeats exactly the same way each day, and upon waking retains memory of the previous day. This is what I call a "time-loop," ...
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Dickens invented the scary clown?

Today in "Messages from Firefox" (some annoying thing that comes up in my browser), I saw the following which piqued my interest: Dickens invented the scary clown, the ‘80s perfected it. ...
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What is the trope known in Russian as “speaking name” called in English?

There's a trope known in Russian as "говорящее имя", i.e. "speaking name". The point of this trope is that a character's name (or surname) indicates its important, sometimes ...
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3answers
9k views

Why is black evil and white good?

This trope appears everywhere in literature - especially in fantasy. Everywhere you turn, black means bad and white means good. This is particularly true when applied to people, or the consequences of ...
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What is the origin of the trope of an evil character whose name is not permitted to be spoken?

Many works of fantasy involve an evil leader or "dark lord" whose real name is known but usually not permitted to be spoken, either by his own followers (out of respect?) or by others (out of fear?) ...
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52 views

“Returning Traveller” Trope

In the poem “The Ruined Cottage” by William Wordsworth, the narrator listens to an old man sitting outside of an abandoned cottage tell of the family that used to live therein. The man describes how ...
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499 views

Why are Dwarfs almost always technologically advanced compared to other races?

In almost every fantasy world Dwarfs are almost always shown to have superior technology compared to other races. Why is that?
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1answer
824 views

Is there a name for a comic relief character that temporarily becomes highly capable?

This is a trope that I've seen sometimes in comic books. I haven't seen it in prose fiction yet. Sometimes, we see a character who provides comic relief become highly capable for a single issue or ...
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9k views

Where did the idea of a “true name” come from?

There's a common trope in Western fantasy that, up until now, I've sort of taken for granted: the "true name." This is the idea that all things have true names that are somehow more closely linked to ...
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472 views

Was there a deliberate parallel between the Thénardiers and Gollum?

Long ago, I noticed that there was a parallel between The Lord of the Rings and Les Misérables in the characters of the Thénardiers and Gollum. Gollum has the One Ring at the start of the tale in The ...
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Did magic realism begin in literature? [closed]

Was magic realism started with literature or was it created in other arts before literature? For example, One Hundred Years of Solitude is a magic realistic book. Was One Hundred Years of Solitude ...