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I'm trying to remember a word that means showing strong opinion for; where someone has to make a choice between two opposite things.

For example, say you have to choose what your favorite fruit is, apples or oranges, and in this sense, lets say apples and oranges are total opposites. There are people who strongly agree / favor with apples and people who strongly agree / favor oranges. Inherently, these people strongly disagree / oppose with the opposite choice. It might also be just a single object and there are people who like it and some who don't

(1) What would the person be described as when they feel that strong, opinionated way?

(2) And what is the word that describes this situation, in which one must decide between two opposites?

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3 Answers 3

up vote 4 down vote accepted

There are a lot of words that mean "having an extremely strong opinion." Here are some good ones.

Ardent

Passionate

Zealous

Fervent

Vehement

Also, Partisan. Someone who is so strongly in favor of a particular cause of another is called partisan. This is generally used in politics to describe members of political parties who only act in their party's best interests.

For the second question, a word that describes a situation where one can only believe one way or the other:

Controversial

Polarizing

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You could describe them as being pertinacious:

per·ti·na·cious/ˌpərtnˈāSHəs/ Adjective: Holding firmly to an opinion or a course of action.

For the second point, I would use polarising.

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The answers to the two parts of the Q:

a. staunch
b. dilemma

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The usual meaning of dilemma is "A circumstance in which a choice must be made between two or more alternatives that seem equally undesirable", and other less-common senses carry the same connotation of undesirable alternatives. The examples in the question carry no such connotations. Also, question #2 specifically says "one must decide between two opposites"; the horns of a dilemma need not be opposites. –  jwpat7 May 6 '12 at 21:21
1  
It seems you have an aversion to the word. There are no negative connotations in current usage of 'dilemma', nor is its use limited against opposites. It is perfectly acceptable for two (not 'or more') desirable opposite options. –  Kris May 6 '12 at 21:34

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