A paradox involves a statement or situation that contradicts itself or seems to go against common sense. It is often used to create an element of surprise or confusion in a work of literature, and to challenge the reader’s assumptions about the world. A paradox can also be used to highlight an underlying truth or irony in a situation, and to convey a deeper meaning or message. This device is commonly used in poetry, prose, and drama, and can add complexity and depth to the writing.

Examples of paradox:

“I am nobody.” – This statement seems to contradict itself, as the speaker is clearly identifying themselves while also claiming to be nobody.

“The enemy of my enemy is my friend.” – This statement appears to be contradictory, as it suggests that someone who is normally considered an enemy can become a friend under certain circumstances.

“Less is more.” – This statement is paradoxical, as it suggests that reducing or simplifying something can actually make it more effective or impactful.

“This statement is false.” – This statement creates a paradox, as if it is true, then it is false, but if it is false, then it is true.

“The sound of silence.” – This phrase is paradoxical, as silence is typically associated with the absence of sound, yet this statement implies that silence can have a sound of its own.


3 thoughts on “Paradox”

  1. What is the difference between paradox, oxymoron and antithesis? Can anyone explain with the use of examples?

    1. Oxymorons are used when opposing words or concepts are put together in a sentence, but unlike a paradox it doesn’t have to be contradictory, or ironic. Also unlike a paradox, it is not used to confuse you. An Example would be “As I sipped my drink, I could feel the ice burning my tongue.” This is an oxymoron because burning, which is usually hot, is used with ice, which is cold. It is not meant to confuse you, everyone understands what is meant by the burning sensation of ice.

      A paradox would be something that is used to confuse you or something deliberately playing on the contradictory or paradoxical nature of the conflicting concepts. For example, “I could hear the silence in the room”. This is a paradox because you actually can not hear silence as silence is the lack of sound. But it plays on the irony of the two concepts to describe the situation.

      Antithesis is just the inverse of a statement. It doesn’t have to do with opposing words or contradictory ideas but rather it is simply an inverse of another statement. For example, “The firm’s actions were quite the antithesis of their policies.”

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