Carnivalesque Essay

1339 Words6 Pages
Carnivalesque is a concept that is directly associated with the theory of Bakhtin presented in “Rabelais and his Word”. Bakhtin explained that culture has been managed or controlled by authorities and church mainly in the medieval time. However, with time, culture became a surrogated element for generally accepted activity of humor. Bakhtin presented a very clear idealistic image of carnival where everything could happen to illustrate life and celebrate the presence of body. This rather raises the question regarding carnival as a significant part of modern life. This paper aims to discuss the statement of Bakhtin stating that carnival has undergone a great deal of transition from medieval time to romanticism. Furthermore, a discussion or implementation of the idea that was presented by Bakhtin will be done on Batman (1989) and Night before Christmas (1993).
It is important to understand the context of carnival theory presented by Bakhtin before discussing the difference between medieval and modern carnival and the reasons behind transition. The contextual understanding of carnival by Bakhtin is based upon the European tradition of carnival. Critics claimed that Bakhtin took interest in assessing the seventh century forms of the grotesque because he was impressed by carnivals as he viewed them as occasions where the lows and highs of the society submerged together for some time. In simpler words, the authority of the church and state came together without any control. It will not be incorrect to state that Bakhtin’s account of carnival was anarchic where everyone liberated as audiences and performers (McNay, 1994).
It has further been stated by Bakhtin that Carnivalesque bodies were involved in the use of absurd or laughter in or...

... middle of paper ...

... a way of celebration. Previously, carnival was considered as a way to bring different levels into a surrogated one. Throughout the period of romanticism, phenomenological practices and experiences underwent major changes. These transitions are evident from fact that more and more emphasis is now put on masquerade. The view of carnival was rather in terms of celebrating death. In simpler words, it can be said that life that ends once, is more likely to leave out a way for another to begin. The example which was aforementioned also marks that the literature in medieval times talked about eternal dance and one level for all where a life ends and gives a way for the new one to begin. The example of films has also shown us that interpretation of carnival has changed in modern times. Now, more and more stress in being posed on people having different characters to play.

More about Carnivalesque Essay

Open Document