How can we define and explain "dichotomy" in literature?
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Dichotomy means a division into two opposing parts. In literature, the author often uses dichotomy to create conflict. Some common examples of dichotomy in literature include good/evil, soul/body, heaven/hell, real/imagined, love/hate. Sometimes the dichotomy appears centered in one character, but often the author will use separate characters to represent the opposing sides.
Here are some examples:
From Star Wars, Luke Skywalker/Darth Vader-- Both representing the dichotomy between the Jedi and the Dark Side.
Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde-- Here the dichotomy is centered in one character, representing good and evil.
The Hunger Games, The setting forms a dichotomy--the corrupt Capitol versus the honest, hard-working districts.
A dichotomy is the division of a proposition into two parts which are both mutually exclusive - i.e. both cannot be simultaneously true - and jointly exhaustive - i.e. they cover the full range of possible outcomes. They are often contrasting and spoken of as "opposites". The term comes from dichotomos (divided): dich- ([in] two) temnein (to cut).
from Webster's Online Dictionary
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