How we change what others think, feel, believe and do
Rivalry of superior and inferior
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The Superior Rival is set against an Inferior Rival, both vying for the Object of Rivalry.
Rivalry is a rich general theme and many different sub-situations of rivals in different contexts can be found, as indicated above. In our own lives, also, we often find rivals, ranging from those who would seek promotion against us at work to rivals for the affection of third another.
When one person is superior in some way to another, then they may seem to have the upper hand and are bound to win. However the inferior rival can employ other means. If the inferior rival is bad, they may use evil subterfuge, for example discrediting or poisoning the superior rival. Where the inferior rival is good, then they may win support from others or perhaps see through the evil ways of the superior rival.
Where the object of rivalry is another person, this person is given significant power, which they can respect or abuse according to their will. They thus join in the story and may be a major character. A typical pattern is where they add their power to the inferior person, thus counterbalancing the power of the superior person. It is also easy for triangular games to ensue.
'Rivalry of superior and inferior' is the 24th of Georges Polti's 36 Dramatic Situations.