The protagonists in James Baldwin’s 1957 short story
“Sonny’s Blues” are constantly smiling and laughing. The
story’s narrator notices these gestures and utilizes them to grasp at
clarity when clarity seems out of reach. This article examines the
narrator’s focus on this duo of facial expressions which reliably denote
positive emotion. The relationship we maintain between our smiles and our
laughter structures many of the narrator’s interactions with the
story’s hero. More though, this relationship between smiles, laughter,
and a kind of joy resembles the relationship Baldwin has
described between the blues and the world this genre of music depicts.
Schwarz , K.
Richey , L.
( 2019 ), ‘ Humanitarian
Humor, Digilantism, and the Dilemmas of Representing Volunteer Tourism on
Social Media ’, New Media &
Society , 21 : 9 ,
1928 – 46 .
, is discussed in this collection by
Natalie Eschenbaum in her chapter on Robert Herrick. Herrick suggests that
‘to sensually engage with things or people is usually to infuse with them, to
melt into them, to liquefy’ (p. 115); here the double nature of the senses seems
to be invoked deliberately by Herrick in order to express the nature of desire.
Equally, the process of sense perception is bound up with the humoral condition of an individual subject. Some of the chapters in this volume are right,
This book is about science in theatre and performance. It explores how theatre and performance engage with emerging scientific themes from artificial intelligence to genetics and climate change. The book covers a wide range of performance forms from the spectacle of the Paralympics Opening Ceremony to Broadway musicals, from experimental contemporary performance and opera to educational theatre, Somali poetic drama and grime videos. It features work by pioneering companies including Gob Squad, Headlong Theatre and Theatre of Debate as well as offering fresh analysis of global blockbusters such as Wicked and Urinetown. The book offers detailed description and analysis of theatre and performance practices as well as broader commentary on the politics of theatre as public engagement with science. It documents important examples of collaborative practice with extended discussion of the Theatre of Debate process developed by Y Touring theatre company, exploration of bilingual theatre-making in East London and an account of how grime MCs and dermatologists ended up making a film together in Birmingham. The interdisciplinary approach draws on contemporary research in theatre and performance studies in combination with key ideas from science studies. It shows how theatre can offer important perspectives on what the philosopher of science Isabelle Stengers has called ‘cosmopolitics’. The book argues that theatre can flatten knowledge hierarchies and hold together different ways of knowing.
Troubling race, ethnicity, and masculinity in Beowulf
John W. Tanke, ‘ Wonfeax wale : ideology and figuration in the sexual riddles of the Exeter Book’, in Britton J. Harwood and Gillian R. Overing (eds), Class and gender in early English literature: intersections (Bloomington, IN: Indiana University Press, 1994), pp. 21–39, at 24.
Nina Rulon-Miller, ‘Sexual humor and fettered desire in Exeter Book Riddle 12’, in Jonathon Wilcox (ed.), Humour in Anglo-Saxon literature (Cambridge
, and insoluble cultural trope. Indeed, cartoons, jokes, and horror stories about
“old” single women are widely accepted and disseminated, a cautionary reminder for
women concerning the specter of being single in old age and what looms ahead for
them. In that light, single women are often the subject of caustic remarks, sardonic
humor, patronage, and scorn, because they are seen to pose the constant threat of
pervasive perversion to the normative societal order.
This chapter asks what gives this powerful stereotypical image so much discursive
force and makes it so
something was to invite the ‘vaporous fluid spiritus’ to course through,
and to necessarily affect, your entire body. The effect would be felt with the
‘excitation […] of the body’s four humors according to whether the heart
dilated in desire or contracted in avoidance’. And then you would experience
‘this rush of humors throughout the body as passion of one sort or another’.23
In this way, seventeenth-century sensation is akin to liquefaction, as Herrick
suggests in his verse.
Herrick may or may not have read Lucretius, but he certainly was aware of
Galenic theories of
The soundscape of Ingmar Bergman’s Smiles of a Summer Night
film was a
huge international success, winning praise with a European Film
Award and the Cannes award for Best Poetic Humor in 1956. See
Bergman, The Magic Lantern , p. 339.
For A Lesson in Love (1954), he claims in
The Magic Lantern that he learned to trust the comedic
instincts of his actors, Eva Dahlbeck and Gunnar Björnstrand,
Similarly, the Prologue of A Lesson in
Love also states that ‘ Lesson could have been
Let me repeat, I deeply suspect you know these things.
But, for some reason, you seem to persist in pretending otherwise.
This pretense troubles me, because it suggests that you are burdened
by some fear that lies beyond the ken of your critique of film. I
think this in part is because the quality of
humor contained in your essay hesitates at that threshold where we
through conformity rather than transgression, by regulating rather than expressing emotions, and by harmonising the interests of the self with those of the state through what Elisabeth Hsu has referred to, in the context of older humoral theories of balance, as the ‘medico-moral nexus of moderation’.
In an increasingly individualised, liquid society in which self-interest and self-fulfilment – however desirable – might disrupt social order, balance operated as a ‘catchall term’,