Vol. 9 (2020)
CONDIZIONI DI POSSIBILITÀ – Tra rito e mito: il Carnevale nella cultura europea

“Ubi fracassorium, ibi fuggitorium”: Pulcinella e l’enigma della ricapitolazione del tempo

Published December 31, 2020

Abstract

Who is Pulcinella? What does his laughter have to say about the “end of time” and the end of life of Giandomenico Tiepolo? How can the end of a life make anyone laugh like Carnival’s popular mask does? This article tries to answer such questions. By unfolding the tools that come from the realm of Giorgio Agamben’s philosophy – notably the notion of “recapitulation of time” in its relation to comedy – we will trace a path which links Michail Bachtin’s theories on the carnivalesque culture together with a recognition in the aesthetics of “character”. In this encounter, the consistency of Pulcinella-King Carnival’s form of life will appear in the light of an “escape route”: it winks at a kind of general and anonymous beatitude, which pairs with the experience of the destitution of time.

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