Saturday 03rd of December 2022


Out of ordure. Shi(f)t(s) and fluidity in expelling (e)motion

Delia Chiaro, Università di Bolognapdf_icon_30x30




Abstract: The inclusion of scurrilous parody in both its visual and verbal representations of political satire is by no means new. From works of Jonathan Swift to the comedy of the Monty Pythons, across time British culture has been literally smeared with excreta and a variety of other bodily fluids. The present is no different. On social media, the term “Brexit” soon morphed into the word “Brexshit” mainly by the nation’s so-called “Bremainers”, and triggered a plethora of verbal banter, image macros (aka internet memes) gifs, vids etc. not to mention traditional cartoons often involving the presence of toilets, dung, and what I have labelled “Brown humour”. Similarly, in the USA, the politics of President Donald Trump prompted similar representations in the name of humour. Based on a robust sample of both verbal and visual content retrieved from the press and the internet, I set out to examine how political discourse has become contaminated with elements of disgust and discuss why this might be so.


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