Carnivalesque

Pieter_Bruegel_II-Combat_de_Carnaval_et_Careme_IMG_1463-2

This word ‘Carnivalesque’ can deciphered into so many interpretations but  for me, my personal understanding of the word is expression. Expression of emotions, feelings, moments, physical state and so fourth. Over the years we’ve seen many examples of ‘Carnivalesque’ behaviour. One being the riots of 2011 which started in the capital but then spread like wild fire across the U.K. Some saw the outcry as an unnecessary amped up ‘spectacle’, others viewed the ‘powerful’ and frightening imagery as a attempt to release built up tension which had been dwelling in the hearts of many for decades, from what ever position you viewed the riots it will live long in our ‘memory’. The spectacle of it all tends to be packaged well by the media to serve to the public or who ever else will buy into it. The bottom line is this ‘Carnivalesque’ behaviour can be found at parties, offices, sporting events, etc and is displayed by everyone at some point in their lives. My take on it all is that we all choose to express our ‘Carnivalesque’ side at different times depending on when it is suitable in our own little worlds (i.e. work, family .etc) I feel like we tend to express this side of us in social groups and as collectives because it makes it easier to justify what you are doing though it may be morally wrong.

Bakhtin’s spoke about the four categories of the ‘Carnivalesque’ and the sense of the word:

  • Bringing people together who may not normally be together.
  • Eccentric behaviour becomes acceptable without the usual consequences
  • Enables things which tend to be separated the opportunity to come together (i.e different classes)
  • It also gave ‘Sacrilegious‘ events the opportunity to take place without judgment or scrutiny
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