Download Circus as Multimodal Discourse : Performance, Meaning, and by Paul Bouissac PDF

By Paul Bouissac

This quantity provides a concept of the circus as an earthly ritual and introduces a style to investigate its performances as multimodal discourse. The book?s fifteen chapters conceal the diversity of circus specialties (magic, family and wild animal education, acrobatics, and clowning) and supply examples to teach how cultural that means is produced, prolonged and amplified via circus performances. Bouissac is without doubt one of the world?s Read more...

summary: This quantity provides a idea of the circus as an earthly ritual and introduces a style to research its performances as multimodal discourse. The book?s fifteen chapters disguise the variety of circus specialties (magic, household and wild animal education, acrobatics, and clowning) and supply examples to teach how cultural which means is produced, prolonged and amplified via circus performances. Bouissac is among the world?s best specialists on circus ethnography and semiotics and this paintings is grounded on examine performed over a 50 yr span in Europe, Asia, Australia and the Americas. It concludes w

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Extra resources for Circus as Multimodal Discourse : Performance, Meaning, and Ritual

Example text

The notion of primary and secondary modeling systems was proposed in order to extend to nonverbal cultural objects the relationship that existed between languages and texts, the latter systems using the former as the basic materials for their creation. Thus, the concepts of textuality and literariness which had been the cornerstones of structural poetics could be applied to the analysis of all kinds of performances. The etymologies of the terms “text” and “structure,” which are derived respectively from the Latin verbs meaning “to weave” and “to construct,” show that both “text” and “structure” in their literacy sense are themselves ultimately metaphorical.

I have better to quickly learn how to use my elbows in a crowd to access the wicket where the best seats are sold. Beyond the gate, I find myself in a huge tent through which the public proceeds to enter the circus. Oriental carpets are spread on the ground; five glittering chandeliers are hanging above our heads; incense is burning in shiny copper vases; twenty elephants are lined up on one side, at a safe distance; a few horses and camels are kept in low enclosures of decorated red canvass on the other side.

Obvious wars of wills at times take place in the ring, in which bluffing plays a great part. But even in a smooth elephant performance there is a constant mutual testing of resolve which belongs to the subtext as does the past history of the act, a dimension all the more relevant as elephants are endowed with exceptional memory. This, however, is irrelevant to the ethnography of circus performances which pertains to the way acts are perceived as meaningful and pleasurable by their audience. Circus Krone rightly advertises itself as the largest in Europe.

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