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The Pandemic Is Remaking What Performance Can Be

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https://www.newyorker.com/culture/culture-desk/the-pandemic-is-remaking-what-performance-can-be

newyorker.com

The Pandemic Is Remaking What Performance Can Be
As social-distancing measures begin to take hold in the United States, we study images from around the world, where iconic public streets and squares have sat mostly vacant for weeks. Some of these sites were fodder for artists and writers for centuries, but their total emptiness and silence had almost never been contemplated.

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Performances In Isolation

  • The world is used to seeing people performing in the iconic public streets and podiums all across the planet, it is a strange sight now, with near-total emptiness and silence as ‘Quaranti...

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SIMILAR ARTICLES & IDEAS:

Using music

During the plague of Saint Charles in the summer of 1576, religious gatherings were banned in Italy for fear of contagion. But nothing could stand in the people's way.

Following a call t...

Music connects

Music is a very powerful tool during quarantine. People in Italy, Spain, and the wider world are using music to bring their communities together.

When you're making music, you submit your mind and body to its regulation. When you're doing the Macarena with your neighbors, you're contributing to the larger goal of the group and inspire global solidarity.

Other benefits of music

Since the time of ancient Greece, medicine claimed that maintaining a positive mind can help treat physical disease.

  • During the Renaissance, patients were encouraged to compose and study art and play music.
  • When plague approached England, Henry VIII chose his organ player as one of the five men he quarantined with.

Music asks that we laugh, and sing, and dance, and seems to be a real antidote to fear, just as the Renaissance doctors claimed.

Work: An inevitable Curse

Work: An inevitable Curse

Working, in broad terms has always been a curse, especially in ancient times for a majority of people. Work is to be done for providing basic food and shelter, and in most cases, it does not provid...

The Purpose Of Work

Work is the effort we make to get what nature did not provide us automatically, or what is not in abundance. We need food, water, shelter, clothes, and basic necessities that make our lives easier. We invent tools to help ourselves where nature didn’t help us.

Example: We couldn’t carry too much water in our cupped hands, so we worked and made a bucket to carry it.

The Tools We Use To Work

Apart from simple mechanical objects that define what tools are, like a hammer or a bucket, tools can also have broader meanings like:

  • A book is a tool to preserve our ideas and memory.
  • A painting can be a tool to preserve the beauty of what we see or imagine.
  • Religion can be a tool to drill into our minds the ideas of morality and consolation that we otherwise will not want to think about.

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Niccolò Machiavelli's Prince

Machiavelli ends his treatise The Prince invoking a "redeemer" who shall save enslaved Italy from the domination of foreign powers that have left her gravely wounded and "almost without...

Daenerys Stormborn of House Targaryen

Her character development throughout the seasons unfolds within a dynamic that probes fundamental questions of politics and leadership. 

Machiavelli examined the same questions in the 16th century in his treatise, The Prince.  Daenerys may be a version of the redeemer  he talk about in his treaty.

Machiavelli's First instruction

First instruction to maintain power and preserve order: The prince does not have free range to conduct evil, but must strive for goodness as the primary measure of actions.

Daenerys gives conquered soldiers a choice: "Bend the knee and join me. Together, we will leave the world a better place than we found it. Or refuse and die."

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