12 Angry Men

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Generally speaking, an antagonist is a character in a literary work that opposes the protagonist, or chief character. The antagonist can be a person, animal, or force of nature, as long as it provides a source of conflict. Juror Eight could at first be viewed as the antagonist of Twelve Angry Men, because he opposes the votes of the other eleven jurors. However, as the story progresses, Juror Eight establishes reasonable doubt and is able to convince and win over more and more jurors. Eventually, the vote is eleven to one with the majority voting not guilty. Juror Three refuses to be swayed. Thus, he emerges as the main antagonist. I have several arguments on why I believe that Three is the antagonist. Early in the story, the author has given us the impression that Three is a strongly opinionated individual, but he forces his beliefs on others while refusing to listen to what others have to say. The reader is lead to believe that Three has an unconscious grudge against the defendant. In act one, this is evident as he bitterly rants about an incident that occurred over three years ago with his own son, who hit him in the face and then ran away from home. In a way, Three is taking out his anger and frustration on the unfortunate defendant. To sum up, I believe Three to be the antagonist, because he is bitter and biased. Furthermore, he is a big source of conflict not only for the protagonist, but also the other eleven jurors.
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