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Title: An ignored dramatic genre : the contribution of the Sainet to the making of Valencian cultural capital (1845-1939)
Author: Celda Real, Olga Elena
ISNI:       0000 0004 8500 1132
Awarding Body: King's College London
Current Institution: King's College London (University of London)
Date of Award: 2019
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Influential views on dramatic text and performance practice are fundamentally based on the division employed by academics, philologists and linguistics alike between dramatic dialogue as discourse - political and social, and the literary assessment of a dramatic text. However, dramatic dialogue as discourse functions because of the social component of interactional speech found in the colloquial interchanges between characters. The subject of identity in the cultural field is the consequential product of combining the perception and interpretation of diverse forms of capital in context. In a conceptual world, cultural forms are articulated as discourse to allow for the delineating of their borders and their experience is an effect of inferences. But any form of cultural capital, especially if manifested in the fields of theatre and drama, must be experienced dialogically to be legitimated. The fictional frame offered to an audience is by itself a fragment of a possible reality. Yet, it is the inhabiting of that chronotopic situation the sphere wherein situations occur and encounters happen, and in which kinship or affinities develop and are transmitted to an audience. In Valencian area, the sainets addressed a context of performance with defined performative characteristics. The performativity of the text itself - due to its fast production and high level of popularity- produced a linguistic communicative system functioning in context for the sole purpose of interaction: a unique phonetical model idiom of Valencian language in written form, whose utterances (Herman: 1998, 13) were often employed mixed with elements of Castilian language. That phonetical model idiom - the term idiom understood in this thesis as 'the characteristic vocabulary or usage of a specific human group' (Collins: 1994, 771) - is identified and tagged for the first time in this thesis as 'Valensia´' to differentiate it from Valencian language (Valencia`) in the plays analysed here, all in their original versions, without any censorship. The specific characteristics of this phonetical model idiom formed a distinctive speech functioning in chronotopic polyglot code-switching in the plays employed here and was right at the core of the Valencian sainet. The linguistic tokens - the Valencian quips keeping the audience amused and alert to familiar scenes of reality - functioned as verbal cues supported by a gestural language implied in dramatic texts that bestowed meaning beyond the written word, generating specific acts of performativity. The spoken words of the characters created dialogic situations that integrated clear signs embedded in the Valencian cultural field because they encapsulated many of the mannerisms, meaning of utterances, gestures, ethnicity attributes, and recognizable memes employed across the Valencian spectrum. In Valencia, during the historical period limiting this thesis, the question of how Valencian identity traits were constructed and defined in dramatic works depended on their recognition and subsequent legitimating process. In this context, the recognition of unique Valencian cultural factors was supported by the changes occurring in society because of political events, by sweeping thinking trends started by the Valencian Renaixenc¸a in the nineteenth century, and by the emergence of dramatic works in the area of cultural capital that produced literary products with sociological features. These attributes fostered the development of indigenous dramatic forms of expression and communication, in which the tag defined as 'Valensia´' in this thesis, by means of the phonetical malleability exercised by the Valencian playwrights, became a linguistic communicative system of identity, signalling a socio-ideological world capable of portraying a reality accepted and perceived by an audience as such. The sainet authors employed chronotopic details in space (Valencian villages) and time (the present time), in plays performed for Valencian audiences, making the action in the plays real socio-cultural products. This thesis studies the importance of the Valencian dramatic genre of the sainet and the usage of the phonetical version 'Valensia´' as the core interactional speech in theses plays during critical periods of its history in the timeframe of this study, proposing it as a conscious option taken by great Valencian playwrights who nurtured and transcribed the spoken speech of the Valencian from the streets on to paper and the stage. This approach contributed to confirm their plays as seminal cultural products, as the characters' voices were transcribed, dramatized, staged, printed and distributed, widening reception. The sainets in this thesis contributed to develop systems of symbolic expression around elements of affluence, ethnicity, language, kinship, beliefs, interactional speech, and social, political and cultural variations: elements that created a unique dramatic genre that enriched and contributed to the making of Valencian cultural capital in precise time and space.
Supervisor: Boyle, Catherine Mary ; Bonaddio, Federico Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available