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Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
Kunstformen der Natur (1904) by Ernst Haeckel
The Ingenue is a stock character in literature and film and a role type in the theatre, generally a girl or a young woman who is endearingly innocent.

Typically, the ingenue is beautiful, gentle, sweet, virginal, and often naïve, in mental or emotional danger rather than physical danger, usually a target of The Cad; whom she may have mistaken for The Hero. Due to lack of independence, the ingenue usually lives with her father or a male father figure (although in some rare cases she lives with a motherly figure). The vamp is often a foil for the ingenue (or the damsel in distress, for that matter).

In opera and musical theatre, the ingenue is usually sung by a lyric soprano. The ingenue stereotypically has the fawn-eyed innocence of a child.

The ingenue is often accompanied with a romantic side plot. This romance is usually considered pure and harmless to both participants. In many cases, but not all, the male participant is just as innocent as the ingenue is. Also, the ingenue is similar to the girl next door archetype.

Ingenue and ingenuous may also refer to a new actor or actress or one typecast in such roles.

Ingenue examples

See also

Unless indicated otherwise, the text in this article is either based on Wikipedia article "Ingénue" or another language Wikipedia page thereof used under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License; or on original research by Jahsonic and friends. See Art and Popular Culture's copyright notice.

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