Dyers - Entertainment And Utopia

  • musicals conceived as 'pure entertainment' - the prime determinant of them.
  • What the musical is assumed to be, how it is entertainment, is decided by the people responsible for providing it in concrete form.
  • descriptions of entertainment as 'escape' and 'wish-fulfilment' point to its central idea, utopianism. The utopianism is contained in the feelings it embodies.
  • music as a non-representation icon works as we are emotionally moved by it, but its the least obvious representation of reality.
  • Tap dancing, as an example, works not because of the music and rhythmic movement, but because of the signs in a given culture at a given point of time.
  • The specificity of entertainment's utopia comes to the temporary answers to the inadequacies of society which is to be escaped from through entertainment.
  • examples of social tension and utopian solution
  1. Scarcity = abundance
  2. Exhaustion = energy
  3. Dreariness = Intensity
  4. Fragmentation = community
  • Consider that the problems of class, race, and sexual caste are denied validity as problems by the dominant.
  • "entertainment provides alternative to capitalism which will be provided by capitalism". Through capitalism, we are able to see the possibilities of a utopian society, but it's not given to us.

Three forms of musical: clear separation of numbers and narrative, those that retain division between narrative as problems and numbers as escape, world of the narrative as utopian.

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