The Byzantines had an Aristophanic tradition too. Are any of these characters NOT lambasted today?
He was taught in schools throughout the Byzantine era in part because his Attic Greek was seen as “pure”.
There’s a 12th century book on Aristophanes by John Tzetzes, if that’s your sort of thing. I’m still on my quest to discover if we know what true laughter is in modernity. As early as the year 100 there were people saying that you need a secondary text to understand Aristophanes.
Aha, another 12th century writer, Theodore Prodromos, has been referred to as the Byzantine Lucian. This seems to be a golden thread through the history of satire
Prodromos seems to be obsessed with people who pretended to be someone else, or to use an anachronistic description, with con-men
I’d love to find a list like this
Prodromos’ Bion Prasis (Sale of Political and Poetical Lives) could safely be placed on the top ten list of most undervalued Byzantine texts.
1100 year empire, and who knows anything about it?
The Byzantines didn’t have theatre, they had instead something called theatron
performative culture which found its place in church, on the streets, in monasteries, in schools and in palaces with music, rhetoric, acclamations, poetry, some but not all knit into liturgy and ceremonial.
If you think of some of my favorite “stock characters”, can you imagine them being satirized in a street performance? Never! And they’re all nothing less than the true garbage of the world. Where’s the justice in that? Everyone laughing while others pass by looking at the ground in shame. Something our culture desperately needs. What happens to a society when those who should be mocked aren’t? What you get is a society that is itself a mockery. Or are you not able to laugh when you behold a hog in pigtails because you are so overwhelmed with disgust? She’s cute chewin and grunting, leave her alone.
Prodromos is an addition to another collection of mine. Another forgotten satirist I’ve discussed is Henry Fielding. They all need to be brought together and have life breathed into them. Tell me, what’s more “mean”, insulting a pig, or BEING a pig? I’d have to say the latter. Humor can help us cleanse these disgraces from our society.
What I would do, what joy I’d feel, if I were wandering down a sidewalk only to happen upon a performance titled The Coward. The list goes on, you know my favorite objects of derision. The best ones would doubtlessly incite violence! “The truth of that is supposed to be hidden, not openly laughed at.” You people really need to do something about all these foul abominations that are allowed to stain the public sphere with impunity. I for one have had more than enough of them, and thus I offer others suggestions for what to do about them. If we all mock them together I guarantee you they will go away and learn to reform themselves out of shame. The chances are, you only ever give them a green light, and so you are a stain yourself.
Ahh what I like to see
This article discusses the Byzantine understanding of “satire” and “invective”. It argues that it is unwise to impose modern expectations and definitions on what we call Byzantine satire.
“They” are not going to be handing you these materials, because humorlessness is crucial to maintaining their control.
Typing in “comedians” in google images makes me sick. The kind of people I see there. This is the appearance they want to superimpose over all of this. None of them criticize society, they’re total clowns. They all need to be erased from the cultural memory for drastically misleading people about what humor is about. They’re all Stalin’s fools and nothing more. All the garbage is left untouched, they never broach the forcefield that surrounds it. When you study older forms of their craft you see that it wasn’t always like that.
the constitutive feature of satire is to mock and highlight human faults, to make the reader aware of evil
Doesn’t it bother you that virtually everyone operates as if there’s a forcefield around evil?