Aristophanes and the Carnival of Genres (Arethusa Books) by Charles Platter

By Charles Platter

The comedies of Aristophanes are identified not just for his or her boldly creative plots yet for the ways that they comprise and orchestrate a large choice of literary genres and speech types. not like the writers of tragedy, preferring a uniformly increased tone, Aristophanes articulates his dramatic discussion with notable literary and linguistic juxtapositions, generating a carnivalesque medley of genres that consistently forces either viewers and reader to readjust their views. during this lively and unique research, Charles Platter translates the complexities of Aristophanes' paintings during the lens of Mikhail Bakhtin's serious writing.This booklet charts a brand new path for Aristophanic comedy, taking its lead from the paintings of Bakhtin. Bakhtin describes the best way a number of voices -- vocabularies, tones, and sorts of language originating in numerous social periods and contexts -- seem and engage inside literary texts. He argues that the dynamic caliber of literature arises from the dialogic kin that exist between those voices. even though Bakhtin utilized his concept essentially to the epic and the unconventional, Platter unearths in his paintings profound implications for Aristophanic comedy, the place stylistic heterogeneity is the genre's lifeblood. (Winter 2008)

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Extra resources for Aristophanes and the Carnival of Genres (Arethusa Books)

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Peisthetairos in Birds even threatens to rape the goddess Iris when she crosses the frontier of Nephelococcygia to deliver Zeus’s ultimatum to the city of birds (1253–56). The contest between Right and Wrong in Clouds is decided on the basis of Right’s admission that everyone in the audience is euryproktos, “broad-assed,” the result of habitual anal intercourse (1083–1104). Much of this sounds like the reverberation of carnival laughter, but here the literary-historical dimension is as important as its anthropological substrate.

34 Aristophanes and the Carnival of Genres Nevertheless, the influence of the iambographers is palpable in Aristophanes. He alludes to their poems in his plays, quotes Archilochus at length (West 5, lines 1–3 = Peace 1298– 99, 1301), and, in their manner, dramatizes fierce quarrels between himself and his targets. Whether or not the homology between these characters and the historical individuals they are supposed to represent is exact, Aristophanes seems eager to position himself as a sort of neo-iambographer when it suits his interests to do so.

And was characterized by frequent graphic descriptions of sexuality. Aristophanes mined this tradition both directly, by quoting actual poems and mentioning authors by name, and indirectly, by using the tactics of Introduction 33 the iambographers to reduce his targets to familiar (literary and political) types. 87 Much Aristophanic obscenity has this aggressive component as well. 88 Consider a fairly representative example from Knights, an exchange of threats between the vile Paphlagon (the politician Cleon), who is the de facto ruler of the city, and his upstart challenger, a Sausage-Seller from the marketplace (364– 65): Saus.

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