The treatise that Aristotle is presumed to have written on comedy is lost. There is, however, a fragmentary treatise on comedy that bears an obvious relation to Aristotles treatise on tragedy, poetics, and is generally taken to be either a version of a lost Aristotelian original or an expression of the philosophical tradition to which he belonged. This is the Tractatus coislinianus, preserved in a 10th-century manuscript in the de coislin Collection in Paris. The Tractatus divides the substance of comedy into the same six elements that are discussed in regard to tragedy in the poetics : plot, character, thought, diction, melody, and spectacle. The characters of comedy, according to the Tractatus, are of three kinds: the impostors, the self-deprecators, and the buffoons. The Aristotelian tradition from which the Tractatus derives probably provided a fourth, the churl, or boor. The list of comic characters in the Tractatus is closely related to a passage in Aristotles Nicomachean Ethics, in which the boaster (the person who says more than the truth) is compared with the mock-modest man (the person who says less and the buffoon (who. Comedy as a rite The Tractatus was not printed until 1839, and its influence on comic theory is thus of relatively modern date.
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The contrived artifice of Shakespeare s mature comic plots is the perfect foil against which the reality of the characters feelings and attitudes assumes the greater naturalness. The strange coincidences, remarkable discoveries, and wonderful reunions are unimportant compared with the emotions of relief and awe that they inspire. Their function, as Shakespeare uses them, is precisely to give rise to such emotions, and the emotions, thanks to the plangent poetry in which they are expressed, end by transcending the circumstances that occasioned them. But when such artifices are employed simply for the purpose of eliminating the obstacles to a happy ending—as is the case in the sentimental comedy of the 18th and early 19th centuries—then they stand forth as imaginatively impoverished dramatic clichés. The dramatists of sentimental comedy were committed to writing exemplary plays, wherein virtue would be rewarded and vice frustrated. If hero and heroine were to be rescued from the distresses that had encompassed them, any measures were apparently acceptable; the important thing was that the plays action should reach an edifying end. It is but a short step from comedy of this sort to the melodrama that flourished in the 19th-century theatre. The distresses that the hero and heroine suffer are, in melodrama, raised to a more than comic urgency, but the means of deliverance have the familiar comic stamp: the secret at last made known, the long-lost child identified, the hard heart made suddenly capable. Melodrama is a form minder of fantasy that proceeds according to its own childish and somewhat egoistic logic; hero and heroine are pure, anyone who opposes them is a villain, and the purity that has exposed them to risks must ensure their eventual safety and happiness. What melodrama is to tragedy, farce is to comedy, and the element of fantasy is equally prominent in farce and in melodrama. If melodrama provides a fantasy in which the protagonist suffers for his virtues but is eventually rewarded for them, farce provides a fantasy in which the protagonist sets about satisfying his most roguish or wanton, mischievous or destructive, impulses and manages to do so with.
This is never managed without a good deal of contrivance, and the plot of the typical romantic comedy is a medley of clever scheming, calculated coincidence, and wondrous discovery, all of which contribute ultimately to making the events answer precisely to the heros or heroines. Plotting of this sort has had a long stage tradition and not exclusively in comedy. It is first encountered in the tragicomedies of the ancient Greek dramatist Euripides (e.g., Alcestis, Iphigeneia in tauris, ion, helen ). Shakespeare explored the full range of dramatic possibilities of the romantic mode of comedy. The means by which the happy ending is accomplished in romantic comedy—the document or the bodily mark that establishes identities to the satisfaction of all the characters of goodwill—are part of the stock-in-trade of all comic dramatists, even such 20th-century playwrights as jean Anouilh (in. Eliot (in The confidential Clerk, 1953). There is nothing necessarily inconsistent in the use of a calculatedly artificial dramatic design to convey a serious dramatic statement.
Satire assumes standards against which professions and practices are judged. To the extent that the professions prove hollow and the practices vicious, the ironic perception darkens and deepens. The element of the incongruous points in the direction of the grotesque, which implies an admixture of elements that do not match. The ironic gaze eventually penetrates to a vision of the grotesque quality of experience, marked by the discontinuity of word and deed and the total lack of coherence between appearance and reality. This suggests one of the extreme limits of comedy, the satiric extreme, in which the sense of the discrepancy best between things as they are and things as they might be or ought to be has reached to the borders of tragedy. For the tragic apprehension, as kierkegaard states, despairs of a way out of the contradictions that life presents. As satire may be said to govern the movement of comedy in one direction, romance governs its movement in the other. Satiric comedy dramatizes the discrepancy between the ideal and the reality and condemns the pretensions that would mask realitys hollowness and viciousness. Romantic comedy also regularly presents the conflict between the ideal shape of things as hero or heroine could wish them to be and the hard realities with which they are confronted, but typically it ends by invoking the ideal, despite whatever difficulties reality has put.
Wherever there is life, there is contradiction, says Søren kierkegaard, the 19th-century danish existentialist, in the concluding Unscientific Postscript (1846 and wherever there is contradiction, the comical is present. He went on to say that the tragic and the comic are both based on contradiction but the tragic is the suffering contradiction, comical, painless contradiction. Comedy makes the contradiction manifest along with a way out, which is why the contradiction is painless. Tragedy, on the other hand, despairs of a way out of the contradiction. The incongruous is the essence of the laughable, said the English essayist William hazlitt, who also declared, in his essay on Wit and Humour in English Comic Writers (1819 man is the only animal that laughs and weeps; for he is the only animal that. Comedy, satire, and romance comedys dualistic view of the individual as an incongruous mixture of bodily instinct and rational intellect is an essentially ironic view—implying the capacity to see things in a double aspect. The comic drama takes on the features of satire as it fixes on professions of virtue and the practices that contradict them.
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As long as there was at least a theoretical separation of comic and tragic styles, either genre could, on occasion, appropriate the stylistic manner of the other to a striking effect, which was never possible after the crossing of stylistic lines became commonplace. The ancient Roman games poet Horace, who wrote on such stylistic differences, noted the special effects that can be achieved when comedy lifts its voice in pseudotragic rant and when tragedy adopts the prosaic but affecting language of comedy. Consciously combined, the mixture of styles produces the burlesque, in which the grand manner (epic or tragic) is applied to a trivial subject, or the serious subject is subjected to a vulgar treatment, to ludicrous effect. The English novelist Henry fielding, in the preface to joseph Andrews (1742 was careful to distinguish between the comic and the burlesque; the latter centres on the monstrous and unnatural and gives pleasure through the surprising absurdity it exhibits in appropriating the manners of the. Comedy, on the other hand, confines itself to the imitation of nature, and, according to fielding, the comic artist is not to be excused for deviating from. His subject is the ridiculous, not the monstrous, as with the writer of burlesque; and the nature he is to imitate is human nature, as viewed in the ordinary scenes of civilized society.
The human contradiction In dealing with humans as social beings, all great comic artists have known that they are in the presence of a contradiction: that behind the social being lurks an animal being, whose behaviour often accords very ill with the canons dictated. Comedy, from its ritual beginnings, has celebrated creative energy. The primitive revels out of which comedy arose frankly acknowledged mans animal nature; the animal masquerades and the phallic processions are the obvious witnesses. Comedy testifies to physical vitality, delight in life, and the will to go on living. Comedy is at its merriest, its most festive, when this rhythm of life can be affirmed within the civilized context of human society. In the absence of this sort of harmony between creatural instincts and the dictates of civilization, sundry strains and discontents arise, all bearing witness to the contradictory nature of humanity, which in the comic view is a radical dualism; efforts to follow the way. The duality that tragedy views as a fatal contradiction in the nature of things, comedy views as one more instance of the incongruous reality that everyone must live with as best they can.
The comic impulse in the visual arts is discussed in the articles caricature and cartoon and comic strip. Read More on This Topic radio: Comedy, among radios most popular and enduring shows were comedy programs. Many of the mediums early comedians had learned their trade in vaudeville. The regimen of performing before several different audiences each day sharpened their timing, a skill that was invaluable for radio. Early comedy, origins and definitions, the word comedy seems to be connected by derivation with the. Greek verb meaning to revel, and comedy arose out of the revels associated with the rites of, dionysus, a god of vegetation.
The origins of comedy are thus bound up with vegetation ritual. Aristotle, in his poetics, states that comedy originated in phallic songs and that, like tragedy, it began in improvisation. Though tragedy evolved by stages that can be traced, the progress of comedy passed unnoticed because it was not taken seriously. When tragedy and comedy arose, poets wrote one or the other, according to their natural bent. Those of the graver sort, who might previously have been inclined to celebrate the actions of the great in epic poetry, turned to tragedy; poets of a lower type, who had set forth the doings of the ignoble in invectives, turned to comedy. The distinction is basic to the Aristotelian differentiation between tragedy and comedy: tragedy imitates men who are better than the average and comedy men who are worse. For centuries, efforts at defining comedy were to be along the lines set down by Aristotle: the view that tragedy deals with personages of high estate, and comedy deals with lowly types; that tragedy treats of matters of great public import, while comedy is concerned. Implicit, too, in Aristotle is the distinction in styles deemed appropriate to the treatment of tragic and comic story.
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It is contrasted on the golf one hand with tragedy and on the other with farce, burlesque, and other forms of humorous amusement. The classic conception of comedy, which began with, aristotle in ancient, greece of the 4th century bce and persists through the present, holds that it is primarily concerned with humans as social beings, rather than as private persons, and that its function is frankly corrective. The comic artists purpose is to hold a mirror up to society to reflect its follies and vices, in the hope that they will, as a result, be mended. The 20th-century French philosopher. Henri bergson shared this view of the corrective purpose of laughter ; specifically, he felt, laughter is intended to bring the comic character back into conformity with his society, whose logic and conventions he abandons when he slackens in the attention that is due. Here comedy is considered primarily as a literary genre. The wellsprings of comedy are dealt with in the article humour.
In the reference to the clock striking thirteen we get a sense of the anarchy and disorder lurking in the story. Clearly an indicator that there is disjointed world ahead. Summary, technique and significance have to be linked in a critical essay! Underlying these thoughts are my personal values and my personal philosophy which encompass difference and diversity, fun and friendship, optimism and openness, trust, tolerance and teamwork, creativity, learning and growth, a commitment to reason and critical thinking, an interest in other countries and cultures, and. If you share at least some of these principles, then you should find the following thoughts illuminating and, on occasions, hopefully even inspiring. One of my friends once called my circulation of Thought For The week "a web of wisdom". Comedy, type of drama or other art life form the chief object of which, according to modern notions, is to amuse.
April. But we have to think about why he did and about the significance of that setting. He uses two techniques in the sentence above. Setting, one of the ways in which 1984 develops is that we get to know Winston and share with him his experience of falling in love. Because the scene is set in April, there is a sense of optimism with the anticipated return of the sun and of summer. This mirrors Winston's state of mind; he is love-struck and looking forward with new hope. The bright spring day also represents Winston leaving behind the harshness of the forbidding, totalitarian regime. Language, there is also some dark humour in the sentence.
The domestic shredder setting of the mother's house is lost as the little girl's journey takes her off the pathway; she is drawn into the woods representing the world's hidden dangers. Characterisation, by using traditional characters representing good and evil, order and disorder, innocence and corruption, the story represents a wider universal theme of the power of order and civilisation over destruction and death. Little red Riding hood is the innocent, trusting girl, unaware of the world's dangers. The wolf represents the deceitful, malevolent, murderous chaos of the world. The grandmother is a helpless victim, easy prey for the opportunistic wrongdoer. The father represents a stabilising influence, the restorer of order and justice. Example 2, it was a bright cold day in April, and the clocks were striking thirteen. This is the opening sentence of the well-known novel 1984 by george Orwell.
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Sometimes, when writers deal with specific situations or people, they are also trying to address major themes about life and the world in which we live. Techniques are the elements that a writer brings to his or her story to emphasise the theme on which they are focusing. To score highly in your critical essay, you must show that you understand what techniques a writer has used to convey themes in both the specific and the wider context. Your essay should show that you've come away from reading the poem, novel, short story or play with a deeper understanding of writings these themes. Example 1, the linking of technique and theme is central to the effectiveness of literature. As a children's story, little red Riding hood is a tale about a little girl almost eaten by a wily wolf. In its wider context the story represents the universal theme of evil attempting to destroy goodness; the threat of deceit and malevolence against trust and innocence. It uses two techniques to get these themes across. The interior of the grandmother's cottage and the external danger in the forest contrast to represent safety and civilisation in opposition to danger and wilderness.