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Unformatted text preview: The Carnival – “Grotesque Realism” The carnival should not be confused with a holiday or with self-serving festivals hosted by the government, secular, or theocratic. It is an idea of the folk world which preexists the Gregorian Calendar and Royalty in all states. Bakhtin’s theories of the carnival rely on this ideology: the carnival belongs to the people. Mikhail Bakhtin is a famous Russian literary theorist who lived and wrote during the Russian Revolution. One of his most famous works is based on Rabelais, a medieval French novelist. Bakhtin defines the essence of a carnival, why and how it is important and the plausibility of new relations between body, language, and political practice. For Bakhtin, the carnival is freedom. “Carnival is not a spectacle seen by the people; they live in it, and everyone participates because its very idea embraces all the people. While carnival lasts, there is no other life outside it. During carnival time life is subject only to its laws, that is, the laws of its own freedom. It has a universal spirit; it is a special life is subject only to its laws, that is, the laws of its own freedom....
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- Spring '11
- Mikhail Bakhtin, Carnival, Carnivalesque, François Rabelais, Grotesque body