Now, muffins, there are some Councillors who have appreciated – although occasionally cringed at – the wit and barbs thrown their way from my beautiful plumage (the fountain pen, darling, eyes up!). However, there are still some Palaeozoic illiterates on Council who have yet to comprehend the concept of Political Satire! I can only weep at their lack of understanding or appreciation for this noble Scribe's loving and reverent homage to Dame Delahunty. Alas and alack...
But never fear, Dear Ones! It is your valiant Scribe's aim to not just Entertain, but also ELUCIDATE the masses! And so, a quick primer:
SATIRE is an artistic form (primarily literary or dramatic) in which vices, follies, abuses, or shortcomings are held up to censure through ridicule, derision, burlesque (oh yes!), irony, parody, caricature or other methods – ideally with the intent of shaming individuals, corporations, government, or society itself into improvement. (Yes, Dahlings, I am trying to encourage your BETTERMENT. You are so, so very welcome!)
- POLITICAL SATIRE is often used with subversive intent, in places or situations where political speech and dissent are forbidden or discouraged, as a method of advancing political arguments where other avenues are shut down. (For example, when citizens have been blocked by their representatives for respectfully asking questions, or when they've been bullied and/or threatened for speaking up. Not that we can think of any such examples in Barrie, now, can we, Duckies?!?)
In a recent Hidden Brain (alas, too easy!) episode, "A Conspiracy of Silence", host Shankar Vedantam speaks with economist and political scientist Timur Kuran about how our personal, professional and political lives are shaped by the fear of what other people think. SURPRISE!!! Humour is a useful tool in punching up through A Conspiracy of Silence!!! (Oh, do read on, Duckies, there's so much more to learn!)
From NPR: A Conspiracy of Silence:
SV: So it's almost like the Court Jester role in ancient times? I mean, the one person who could speak Truth to the King was the Court Jester, because it was understood that the Jester was jesting, and everyone can laugh – and you can discuss truths that are beneath the surface, without being marched off to be executed. [!!!!]
TK: Yes, this is exactly the role that comedians play – and comedy flourishes in repressive societies, and it tends to gravitate to areas where we are uncomfortable speaking openly.
[MOI: For example, when citizens have been blocked by their representatives for respectfully asking questions, or when they've been bullied and/or threatened for speaking up. Not that we can think of any such examples in Barrie, now, can we, Duckies?!?]
Well, the Political Satire lesson is over for now, Dahlings. I'm sure there will be more Elucidation to come!
Now run along and don't take yourselves so bloody seriously. But if you'd like to take something seriously, please Seriously consider your BETTERMENT.
Lest the cold pencil of truth be launched into your hard and power-hungry hearts and send you into embarrassing tantrums yet again. Kisses.
Calamus Gladio Fortior