Le Carnavalesque: La Passion Par Rapport à la Theorie de Mikhail Bakhtin

Jennifer L Montesi


According to the theory of Mikhail Bakhtin, the carnival of the Middle Ages and Renaissance played a significant role in medieval culture because it permitted the expression of the carnival spirit, a fundamental tendency of humanity that was hidden from public view in daily activities. In contrast with the ordinary life of mankind, the carnival world was a “second world” and “upside-down world” where laws, social structure, and religious authority ceased to exist. It was a place for unadulterated passion where free and familiar contact between individuals and exceptional creativity promoted the formation of new modes of communication and personal relationships. The expression of carnival spirit was necessary for the survival of humanity such that, upon the demise of the carnival, the same passionate desires of the carnival were transferred to the domain of literature and art. Through an examination of menippean literature, as well as the collective works of Francois Rabelais and Fyodor Dostoevsky, this article provides extensive support in favor of the carnival’s influence on literary works that surrounded the demise of the carnival in popular culture.


Mikhail Bakhtin

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15695/vurj.v1i0.2727

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