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07:04:18 PM Dec 27th 2012
If a work set in the past makes an allusion to some future event, is that Foreshadowing or Foregone Conclusion? I'm specifically thinking of a film scene in which an anti-semite insults a Jewish character before shutting him in a cattle car and sending him to Eastern Europe. During World War I (the character is a soldier in the German army on his way to the Eastern Front). It obviously evokes the character's fate, should he survive the war, but events beyond World War I are never depicted.

Many thanks in advance.
03:44:41 AM Dec 28th 2012
That's Forgone Conclusion. Foreshadowing alludes to future events that happen within the story, though you don't know what they are yet. The example you gave uses the audiences' knowledge of what will happen to tell the guy's story although it's never depicted.
05:50:22 AM Dec 28th 2012
Thanks for that!
04:34:55 AM Nov 14th 2012
Cut these lines in "Western Animation":

  • (In Tangled) The song "Mother Knows Best" has many clever hints to Gothel's eventual fate.
    Go ahead and leave me, I deserve it
    Let me die alone here, be my guest.
    • One of Gothel's earlier lines was "I'm not getting any younger down here!"

They're very obviously meant to be Mother Gothel guilt-tripping Rapunzel. These are the sorts of things a manipulative, abusive person says to get someone else to stay. I'd say that overrules them being "hints" that are so vague they could indicate a huge variety of outcomes.

The second line also doesn't count as foreshadowing, as the audience — and Rapunzel — already know that Gothel ages quickly without Rapunzel's magic.
11:33:20 PM Jun 30th 2012
Why is it two words? It should be "Foreshadowing."
12:25:10 AM Jul 1st 2012
It is. However, if the link that sent you here was typed as ForeShadowing rather than {{Foreshadowing}}, it'll display as two words on the page.
08:33:15 PM Jul 4th 2012
Ah. That's odd. Well, thanks.
02:28:45 PM Mar 1st 2012
I can't help but wonder about what truly qualifies as foreshadowing. It's easy to see something as foreshadowing in hindsight, but when it's completely ordinary in any other context it comes off as odd.

For example, suppose a schoolchild chooses to pet a stray cat on the way home. That's completely ordinary behavior.

Now suppose that later The Reveal comes, and the schoolchild is actually a runaway prince from a distant kingdom, the royal flag of which has a cat on it. Instantly the treatment of the cat seems like foreshadowing, with people claiming the prince was paying respect to his kingdom in his own way.

I claim this is not foreshadowing. Why? Because nobody without foreknowledge of The Reveal has any reason to suspect anything. Like I said, completely ordinary behavior.
05:25:43 PM Mar 1st 2012
That would be Chekhov's Gun (Or cat in this case). As the page for Chekhov's Gun says:

Many people consider the phrase "Chekhov's gun" synonymous with foreshadowing (and they are related), but statements the author made about the Gun can be more properly interpreted as "do not include any unnecessary elements in a story." (Indeed, Chekhov himself first described the concept in reference to live theater productions, where placing a loaded gun on the set would be a clear safety hazard.) Like Foreshadowing, the object's importance often goes unnoticed by the audience, and becomes clear only in retrospect, or during a second viewing.
07:42:22 AM Mar 9th 2012
So then who's to say what's truly foreshadowing and what's just coincidence?
08:26:16 AM Mar 9th 2012
The Law of Conservation of Detail.

Usually, things are in a work of fiction for a reason. There are no true "coincidences" in works of fiction, because what is in a work and what not is a decision of the author.

What the author intended is a different matter. I'd say your example isn't foreshadowing if the royal flag with the cat on it is never seen or mentioned before. But if the flag has been seen or described before and when there was mention of a "lost prince", then it could well be a foreshadowing.
10:36:01 AM Jun 17th 2010
Uh, are you sure you meant to cutlist this? This is very definitely a valid trope, and it's been here long enough to get 852 wicks.
12:00:58 PM Jun 17th 2010
Yes, 852 wicks, and lots of examples!
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