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A Vulgar ArtA New Approach to Stand-Up Comedy$
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Ian Brodie

Print publication date: 2014

Print ISBN-13: 9781628461824

Published to University Press of Mississippi: January 2016

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781628461824.001.0001

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Who Is This Stand-Up Comedian?

Who Is This Stand-Up Comedian?

The Performance of Self

Chapter:
(p.90) Chapter 4 Who Is This Stand-Up Comedian?
Source:
A Vulgar Art
Author(s):

Ian Brodie

Publisher:
University Press of Mississippi
DOI:10.14325/mississippi/9781628461824.003.0006

This chapter considers how the stand-up comedian makes claims to further complement social identities that locate her or him in relation to the audience beyond that single pairing of “stand-up comedian” and “stand-up comedy audience.” Comedians locate themselves and their narratives in a specific time and place; their sense of marginalization is made more explicit, and they establish a relationship with the audience in terms of shared, overlapping, or oppositional social identities that exist independent of the performance relationship. While on stage, stand-up comedians project their personal charisma and tell their stories just like other professional performers do. But stand-up comedy is a different kind of performance. Musicians, for example, perform music, and the non-musical moments are easily distinguishable from the musical ones. Such is not the case with stand-up comedy, where the narrator is understood as similar to the protagonist of his or her first-person narratives.

Keywords:   stand-up comedian, social identities, stand-up comedy audience, comedic narrative, performance relationship, personal charisma, first-person narratives

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