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1. Music
a. the employment of characteristic patterns of notes, esp in variations on a theme
b. decoration or florid ornamentation in general
2. Art a figurative or emblematic representation




the ‘nexus of interdependencies between people’, the ‘chains of functions’ and ‘axes of tensions’ -both of cooperation and conflict – which can be identified in any social context (ELIAS, 1978). The concept is the central analytical concept of Norbert Elias 's FIGURATIONAL SOCIOLOGY. Elias rejects any model of Man as homo clausus – the closed or discrete individual. Equally, however, he also rejects purely structural forms of explanation. It is the model of the ‘dance’ or the ‘game’ which Elias suggests best illustrates the focus he seeks to achieve in social analysis. The ‘image of the mobile figurations of interdependent people on a dance floor (or playing a sport-game) which makes it easier to imagine states, cities, families and also entire social systems as figurations’ (ELIAS, 1939). See also CIVILIZING PROCESS, COURT SOCIETY.



in music, the enrichment of a musical texture through the addition of melodic or rhythmic elements. In harmonic figuration, a voice, usually the bass, moves along the notes of a chord, producing a broken chord or harmonic ornament. The Alberti bass is a type of harmonic figuration. Rhythmic figuration involves the repetition of a single note, several notes of a chord, or an entire chord. In melodic figuration, turns or decorative figures, uniform in rhythm and frequently in melodic contour with the primary melodic line, are inserted between melodic phrases; these figures are close to melodic ornaments.

Since the 16th century melodic figuration has been used primarily when a melody is repeated at another pitch or on another instrument, in variations on the basso ostinato, and, in classical and romantic music, in the variational or reprise sections of a work. Melodic figuration also includes various types of discordant notes—suspended, passing, auxiliary, and changing notes.

References in periodicals archive ?
The "reality" of Jesus lies in the extent to which figurations and stories of Jesus constitute us and our lives.
10 The first marks known to have been made by a human being (on a piece of ochre 77 000 years ago in Southern Africa) echo cracks in mud or figurations in rock.
Cut-Out, according to Fried, continues Pollock's negative dialectic, which it now broadens beyond such stylistic attributes as treatment of line or color to encompass the larger artistic categories of figuration and abstraction.
It was only in "Nile Series," a group of small works from 2000-2003, that Arnold arrived at the synthesis of figuration and abstraction she had long sought.
With it, the underlying linguistic issue within the verb of being is avoided, as in Cranmer's shift of focus from being to calling and figuration, or else its focus is broadened to the sentence and beyond.
In this context, Eli's Calibanic and sexist discourse obviously becomes a parody of itself; its surface meaning yields to the figuration of his internal world and its humanity.
Clearly conceived as summae, reversals, and renewals of her life in stitches, Menopause and its two sibling works transpose hand for machine, framed for merely stretched, and monochrome for pattern or figuration.
These two functions reinforce one another, since the reduction of political discourse to lurid figuration enables it to appeal more easily to audiences at a distance from the immediate world of the court.
These display the figuration of Augustine both to illustrate and to challenge humanist practices.
He shares a sense of perplexity with Munro, though his paint handling and figuration are much more precise; and his disturbing mixture of visual elements and references is akin to Cooke's compositional range, though Quinn's are more overtly humorous.
Apparently oblivious of any such consensus, the curators proudly dub these official Stalinist productions "masterpieces," and then ignore the difference between commissioned propaganda canvases and experimental works that comprise various modes of 1920s new figuration.
Throughout that decade, painting was on the defensive with regard to new media, and by 1980, abstraction was seemingly eclipsed by a resurgence of painterly figuration.