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Definition of Contrafáctico

In logic it refers to a hypothetical event that has no effect in the real world, however, it could be possible in a parallel universe in which other decisions had been made. For example: In the “real” world Messi is a soccer player, while in a factico universe he could be a chef.

Conditional statement, which is opposed to what happened. That is to say, it is that question driven by the doubt of what could have happened. For example, the following is a contrafactico thought: What would have happened if 20 years ago I hadn’t finished with Martina?


The word contrafactico is native to the world of logic and existential philosophy. It is about reasoning about what could be possible if the decisions made were different, which would literally change the present. Therefore, they are about ideas of what could be.

In some contexts, especially in literature and cinema, it is the existence of parallel worlds in which people’s decisions are different and therefore life is totally or at least partially different.


In the film saga “Back to the future” contrafacticos events are presented from the change of events that arise from time travel. In these films, the protagonists make use of a time machine or delorean and change some things in the past.

The Spanish series distributed by Netflix “If I hadn’t known you” explores contrafacticas lives in which different life possibilities can be seen according to the different decisions made by its characters.