What are some good examples of archetypes?
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Archetypes are typical situations, characters, or symbols that are repeated in stories. Most notably found in literature, these are most easily identified in characters. Many stories have a villian, hero or damsel in distress. If you look at The Odyssey for example, Odysseus is the obvious hero, Penelope is the Damsel in distress and the Cyclops is one of many villians that haunt the hero. Other typical character archetypes include the mentor, the sidekick, the old maid, the wise man, and the leader.
As far as situations or events go, often a character experiences a journey, an enlightenment, a baptism or re-birth, or a setback.
For symbols, the traditional use of the color yellow signifies happiness. The use of a butterfly suggests a shift or new life. The use of red can symbolize danger, love, or passion.
An archetype must be a regularly used device in which readers have seen a pattern.
You can even watch The Simpsons on TV and find a rebel (Bart), a brain child (Lisa), a villian (the principal), a trickster (Krusty the Clown), and a stereotypical mom (Marge).
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