(redirected from Anti-heroes)
Also found in: Dictionary.


principal character of a modern literary or dramatic work who lacks the attributes of the traditional protagonist or hero. The anti-hero's lack of courage, honesty, or grace, his weaknesses and confusion, often reflect modern man's ambivalence toward traditional moral and social virtues. Literary characters that can be considered anti-heroes are: Leopold Bloom in James Joyce's novel Ulysses (1922), Willy Loman in Arthur Miller's play Death of a Salesman (1949), the bombardier Yossarian in Joseph Heller's novel Catch-22 (1961), and the protagonists of many of Philip Roth's and Kurt Vonnegut's novels.
References in periodicals archive ?
The portrayal of heroes and anti-heroes in the Coen brothers' films work in a similar dialectic or space 'between the notes.
We like the second because we want our anti-heroes to get away.
An all-dayer at the Academy today celebrates the 30th anniversary of punk by calling up all the anti-heroes.
It's OK that Lyman is unlikable: American drama is crowded with anti-heroes.
Other anti-heroes to make the top ten include Silence of the Lambs killer Dr Hannibal Lecter (Anthony Hopkins) and Jack Carter (Michael Caine) from movie classic Get Carter.
According to the foreword written by Vadge Moore of the Dwarves, "Touring musicians are like sick anti-heroes, and this collection of stories forms an infernal bible for those who don't have the guts to live like we do .
With Hustle, the blood is flowing all the time,both fake and real,as our anti-heroes carry out some deliciously inventive stings.
We are definitely back in the 1970s, when the uncertain anti-heroes of Canadian films screwed up and failed to get the girl.
Fusing the raw energy of punk with the narrative power and grit of hard-edged western rock, it's easy to see why the US critics have been praising these anti-heroes.
The protagonist of Invisible Man runs through as many constructed masks or identities as the more absurdist anti-heroes of Pynchon, et al.
Recent Seven Arts Pictures films include STANDER, which follows the infamous career and life of one of South Africa's most popular anti-heroes, and ASYLUM, based on Patrick Marber's celebrated novel and starring Sir Ian McKellen, along with Marton Csokas and Hugh Bonneville.
After introductory discussions of primal fears, their place in culture and storytelling, and key considerations in writing complex, believable "bad guy" characters, Morrell explores a variety of character types and situations including unlikely protagonists, anti-heroes, dark heroes and bad boys, bullies and mischief makers, villains, sociopaths, heroes versus villains, dangerous women, monsters, creatures, lost souls, and bad guys for younger readers.