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Binary opposition theory


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Media A2

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Binary opposition theory

  2. 2. WHAT IS BINARY OPPOSITION?  A pair or related terms or concepts that are opposites in meaning.  Binary opposites are used in films to help the plot, in addition to being used in music videos as part of a narrative to reinforce song lyrics.  Binary Opposites structure our understanding of a story due to its conventional narrative which enables an equilibrium.
  3. 3. THE THEORY  Lévi-Strauss believed he had discovered that a myth consists of nothing but binary oppositions. Lévi- Strauss believed that the human mind thinks fundamentally in these binary oppositions and that these are what make meaning possible. He considered the job of a myth to be an association of binary opposition with a reconcilable binary opposition, creating the illusion, that the former had been resolved.
  4. 4. BINARY OPPOSITES IN FILM  Binary opposites are used quite frequently in films. These binary opposites create a plot for a film, for example, a hero and a villain (good and evil) creates a storyline where the hero attempts to defeat the villain.  Binary opposites have been said to create a ‘balance’ in the world. For example, if there were no evil in a horror film, there wouldn’t be a horror storyline.
  5. 5. EXAMPLES OF BINARY OPPOSITES  Rich and Poor  Good and Bad  Black and White  Male and Female  Clever and Dumb  Vampire and Werewolf  Strong and Weak  Human and Supernatural Being  Young and Old  Fast and Slow