Speaking in Other Voices

Speaking in Other Voices : An ethnography of Walloon puppet theaters

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Linking actual instances of language use with structures of social power in francophone Belgium, Gross outlines the history and contemporary configuration of rod puppetry in Liege. The analysis of this working class performance art moves between what occurs on and off stage. As puppeteers speak in other voices, sometimes in Walloon and sometimes in French, they create a sociolinguistic model based on 19th century renditions of medieval texts, the voices of past puppeteers, and the language that surrounds them. The high level of linguistic reflexivity created by the regional language movement has led to frequent metalinguistic and metapragmatic commentaries within the puppet shows. This complex speech genre embedded in social context shows the influence of identity struggles: from local class oppositions to imperial designs abroad. Keeping a tight focus on language, Speaking in Other Voices examines the process of entextualization and recontextualization as stories of war and religion are transmitted to succeeding generations.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 339 pages
  • 149.86 x 220.98 x 25.4mm | 635.03g
  • John Benjamins Publishing Co
  • Amsterdam, Netherlands
  • English
  • 1588110540
  • 9781588110541

Table of contents

1. List of Photographs; 2. List of Charts and excerpts from scripts, performances and Walloon literature; 3. Preface; 4. Acknowledgements; 5. Note on translations and transcriptions; 6. 1. Introduction; 7. 2. Heteroglossia in Liege; 8. 3. Class and Culture in 19th century Liege and the Rise of the Puppet Theater; 9. 4. Manipulations and Transformations; 10. 5. The Past in the Present and the Practice of Puppetry; 11. 6. Entextualization/Intertextuality; 12. 7. Closing Intertextual Gaps; 13. 8. Embodying Identities; 14. 9. Religion and War; 15. 10. The World of Puppets, The World of Puppeteers: Politics in Performance; 16. Conclusion; 17. Notes; 18. Appendix; 19. List of Published References; 20. Archival Sources; 21. Index
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