Declamation

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Declamation

 

the art of rhetorically delivering poetry or prose.

In ancient Rome, declamation, or exercise in elocution, was an important element of rhetoric. In France, declamation was the art of delivering speeches and poems on the stage. In the classical theater of the 17th and 18th centuries the concept of declamation encompassed the entire range of methods, including gesture and mimicry, that an actor could use in playing his role. Classicism canonized the solemnly elevated, melodious, and conventional manner of dramatic speech that met the norms of court taste.

The development of romantic and realistic tendencies in the theater of the late 18th and early 19th century led to the decline of classical declamation. Romanticism proclaimed the freedom of the actor’s inspiration and feeling; realism made the actor’s speech and whole behavior on the stage dependent on the character he portrayed, with all his individual and typical traits. With time, the word “declamation” began to designate a false, stilted manner of speaking. K. Stanislavsky considered declamation to be one of the most flagrant manifestations of vacuity and hyprocrisy in the art of acting.

For a long time, a concert reading of poetry from the stage was called a declamation, with no pejorative connotation. In this sense the term “declamation” was later supplanted by “recitation.”

References in periodicals archive ?
The five Latin Declamations brought Vives (1492-1540) to the attention of the literary community in 1520.
5) demonstrates Schumann's more flexible approach to song setting and declamation later in life, and provides a link to the discussion of late-nineteenth-century lied that follows.
Apart from mass rallies, symposia, conventions meetings and speech declamations, a unique ceremony will be held at all six bridges linking Pakistan and PoK, where Pakistani and Kashmiri people will form a human chain.
In spite of all the declamations about a "united Jerusalem," it has always been a tale of two cities.
And when Iraq's Tehran-allied Grand Ayatollah Ali Sistani becomes the new Ayatollah Khomeini of Baghdad, issuing "Great Satan" declamations against the United States and sending terrorist cells to attack us, what then?
After the publication of Thomas Zinsmaier's excellent work on DM 6, (2) the baton passed to Antonio Stramaglia, who has taken the initiative to form an international group of researchers with the aim to provide all Major Declamations with (new) translations and commentaries.
Hoysten's dramatic vocals ricochet between spooky gospel and staccato declamations as guitarist Sara Jaffe churns out angular riffs and scrambled, mixmaster-style fusillades.
Out go the twitching nostrils, flailing arms and sniffy declamations about a cheeky scintilla of vanilla and oodles of gunsmoke.
Similarly, 1997's Batman & Robin, the last installment in a series that demonstrates the law of diminishing returns better than most economic textbooks could ever hope to, managed to turn away the masses far more effectively than Fredric Wertham's homophobic declamations in Seduction of the Innocent.
These and the other bands I discovered offered a dizzying variety of opinions, stories, declamations, rants, and manifestoes, from the existential surf music of Agent Orange and the suburban despair of the Adolescents and Black Flag's rawness in California to the eclectic hardcore bands featured on the Flex Your Head compilation from DC and the Boston scene's Unsafe At Any Speed.
Yet--maybe because I could feel m yself literally growing old during the six-hour screening--I bristled at its pretentious appropriation of Mozart's music and short, tragic life (recounted by a teary narrator) as an allegory of human suffering, and its grandiose Dostoevskian declamations.
Essentially, this is a romance that wavers between opera and soap opera: declamations of love are delivered with breathtaking sincerity; there are childhood memories, dreams, and even an accidentally discovered love letter.