In the past years we have witnessed Sentiment Analysis and Opinion Mining becoming increasingly popular topics in Information Retrieval and Web data analysis. With the rapid growth of the user-generated content represented in blogs, wikis and Web forums, such an analysis became a useful tool for mining the Web, since it allowed us to capture sentiments and opinions at a large scale. Opinion retrieval has established itself as an important part of search engines. Ratings, opinion trends and representative opinions enrich the search experience of users when combined with traditional document retrieval, by revealing more insights about a subject. Opinion aggregation over product reviews can be very useful for product marketing and positioning, exposing the customers’ attitude towards a product and its features along different dimensions, such as time, geographical location, and experience. Tracking how opinions or discussions evolve over time can help us identify interesting trends and patterns and better understand the ways that information is propagated in the Internet. In this study, we review the development of Sentiment Analysis and Opinion Mining during the last years, and also discuss the evolution of a relatively new research direction, namely, Contradiction Analysis. We give an overview of the proposed methods and recent advances in these areas, and we try to layout the future research directions in the field.