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120 Trudier Harris-Lopez Jones, Steven Swann. 1993. “The Innocent Persecuted Heroine Genre, ‘Analysis of Its Structure and Theme: ” Western Folklore 5213-43 though Home Videos: Han in the Old and New Count Koltyk, Jo Ann, 1993. "Telling Narrati Refugees and Self-Documentation of Life Journal of American Folklore 106:435~49. ‘Newell, William Wells, 1906, “Individual and C Folk-lore.” Journal of American Folklore 19:1-15 Olrik, Axel. 1965. “Epic Laws of Folk Narrative.” In The Study of Folk Ed, Alan Dundes. 129-41. Englewood Cliffs, NJ. Prentice-Hall. Propp, Vladimir. 1975 [1928]. Morphology of the Folktale. Austin: Univ ty of Texas Press, Roberts, John W. 1989, From Trickster to Badman: The Black Folk Hero Slavery and Freedom, Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Prese Smith, Moita, 1984. “The Kernel Story: A New Conversational Genre?” Fe Tore Forum 17:199-207. Stewart, Susan. 1991. “Notes on Distressed Genres. Folklore 104:5-31 ‘Thompson, Stith. 1946. The Folktale. New York: Dryden Press, 1955a. Motif-Index of Folk-Literature: A Classification of Narratives Elements in Folktales, Ballads, Myths, Fables, Mediaeval Romances, Exempla, Fabliaus, Jest-Books, and Local Legends. Bloomington: Indiana: University Press, 1955b. “Myths and Folktales.” Journal of American Folklore 68:482~) tive Characteristics Journal of American; 86, Tompkins, Jane, r992. West of Everything: The Inner Life of Westerns. New York: Oxford University Press Utley, Francis Lee. 1965. “Folk Literature: An Operational Definition,” In The Study of Folklore. Ed. Alan Dundes. 7-24. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Pren- tice-Hall van Gennep, Arnold. 1960 {1928}. The Rites of Passage. Chicago: University (of Chicago Press Wachs, Eleanor. 1982. "The Crime-Vietim Narrative as Folkloric Genre.” Journal of the Folklore Institute 19:17-30. DEBORAH A. KAPCHAN 5 Performance music tnd coll het length up the ert, Beouve tet bod {es touch the eat a most every pony and Becase the musta vibrations which are commubeated to the rth alec them lke avery subtle, very Tong mange, fnd propose co tea the spectators ie the sak Sharmecs subces and conduct them by mea frganisms to an sppcchension ofthe sub Artaud What scems paradoxical ahout everythi called beautiful is the fact that it appears. —Benjamin Tr perform isa wanstive ver, Grammatically, this means that the verb perform takes a direct object, relating one ee or ro. ext to another One peorn something, a theater ee [adams comedy, a farce, a tragedy), a musical score, a ritual, a critique, - ss spiel. And this piece, this work, is performed by someone—an a Or, 5 man, a woman, an herbalist, a hermaphrodite, a queen, a slave. Relating subject to object, to perform is also to facilitate transition, There i = agentive quality to performance, a force, a playing out of identities an¢ histories. “Everything in human behavior indicates that we: peter existence, especially our social existence,” waites Schechner {1982:14) To perform is to act in the fullest sense of the word. = Peron smi texto rates nt ez tex Ferman ound up with the nonverbal attributes of sound, taste ane aad weight hat eannot e Verbally mapped—only ald. 12 Deborah A. Kapchan ed to, only invoked. It is apprehended by means of the organism, as Ar. ‘aud proposes. Intticately connected to form, performance isthe fullness of history as it is shaped in the moment. It is a materialization of meng tion, of mind, of spirit, What seemed to Benjamin “the wonder of appear. ance! may be also regarded a the wonder of perfomance Familiarity with such form reassures us, We know, for example, tha the shepherd’ play is performed every year at Christmastim orton 1994) orthaton the day of the Great Feast (aid Labi), every male head | ofhousehold in Morocco will sacrifice a sheep when returning home from ‘morning prayers a the mosque Combs-Schilling 1989) Yet the seeming reliability ofthe form isa deception, promising repetition yet producing evanescence, Fora performance is different every time it is enacted. Each performance emerges from different historical configurations (Bauman 1977}, seading performances over time, we are also reading history As analysts, we want to seize performance, co make it stand sil, We press to memorialize it, to document it for the record. In an act akin to. murder, we transform performance into a text and display it as an object somehow out of time. We carve out its bounds and limits and thereby create “a historical moment.” We become taxidermists, mounting, nam- ing, and numbering it. Some would even like to breathe new life into the beast. But once a performance has been turned into a text, the original is, in fact, dead, its simulacrum fet only for a museum or a book. Entextualizing Performances WHY THE DESIRE TO CAPTURE AND POSSESS PERFORMANCE? ‘Transforming a performance into a text available for analysis involves its objectification. As objects, performances can be studied, interpreted, and, in an illusory sort of way, controlled. But there are other, less hegemot 3e reasons to render performances as texts. In their function as either Preservers or reshapers of tradition, social performances are indexes of social transformation. Freezing the frames of such performative moments and comparing them to one another over time, itis possible to understand how individuals and collectivities ercate their local or national ident ties and how events such as civic celebrations, pageants, parades, and other crowd rituals define s ents (Abrahams 1987}, itis also possible to perceive permutations in these modes of identity creation. Some performances mark their own limits—fairy tales, for example, begin with “once upon a time” and end with Performance 13 after.” The oral tale can be lifted from its context of utterance and trans- ported to other locations—a child's bedroom, a fireside, a theater—or it can be made into a text, “entextualized,” to use the term of Bauman and Briggs {1990}, and thus become available for other usages and interpreta- tions. Other performances have fuzzier boundaries (Briggs 1988) and are more intimately linked to their context of utterance. Where does gossip begin and end, for example? How is the performance of gender identity enacted in daily life? As Briggs notes, “most of the meaning of perfor mance would be lost if equal weight was not accorded to the manner in which performative and nonperformative modes intermingle as well as the way they are distinct” (Briggs 1988:17}. Accordingly, Hymes devotes careful attention to moments within a text where there is a “break- through into performance” {1975}. Understanding where, when, and why this breakthrough happens, we also understand important aspects of a culture's aesthetics. Performances are not only verbal. Because of this, writing about per- formance brings us to the limits of representation, How represent a ges- ture in words? How represent desire or anger! “All true feeling is in real ity untranslatable," notes Artaud (1970:71]. "To express itis to betray it. But to translate it is to dissimulate it.” Writing about performance is always a sort of fabrication, an attempt to recapture a presence forever lost (see Derrida 1978). “To report it back, to record and repeat it, is at ‘once to transform it and to fuel the desire for its mimetic return, Writ- ing is a substitute for the failure of this return [of performance] Phelan (19932:19). The transcribed performance, then, provides only a systematized approximation, one that, like a musical score, operates on many levels, moves in many directions, but does not sing, Transcription is what Fine calls “inter-semiotic translation” (1984), emphasizing the shift from one system of meaning to another. ‘Transcriptions of performance, however, can evoke the original fairly closely, documenting certain cultural phenomena. Take, for example, the following transcription based on Tedlock’s formulation of an a text that, although it cannot reproduce the performance it transcribes, aptures a particular configuration of contour and mnce in just one audible text” (198327). The text repre: sents a sales spiel by a female herbalist-orator in the contemporary open. air marketplace in Morocco. Dressed conventionally in a djellaba and head scarf, she is seated on a small mat under an umbrella, her back against the side of an old ear. A microphone is strapped to her wrist and. her voice is magnified with the movements of her hand. Her audience 124 Deborah A. Kapchan consists of about twenty men and women, some squatting down next to her in a small semicircle and others standing behind them. This little bit that 1 what is it used for BY GOD I won't tell you what it’s used for until you asl What is it used for, alallat going to give you “wha BY GOD I didn’t hear you! What is it used fort Listen to what I'm going to tell you and REMEMBER my words First, give me the one thats going like this [she holds her side and puts on a pained expression] ‘And the one who has destroyed his own liver. He complains about his back bone He's screaming about these [she motions to the groin area Half of THIS has died on him [another arm motion to the lower abdomen) He's sick and tired, Desire is dead. You're no longer aman. Remember what I'm saying well, 'M TALKING TO YOU! You get up four or five times a night, You can’t hold your urine, Go ask about me in El Ksiba [a nearby mountain lines from here to there, Yo You're no longer a man. The prostitute owns you Dut your face is shy. let some doctor examine your body, between me and y * the one who we all share is the Messenger of Gi Prayers and peace be upon him. You're a witness to God. You're a witness to God. You're a witness to God. re a witness to God u're a witness to God. hhad shwiya Ili ghadi n-tick lash y-lig? ahi ma-n-a ish y-liq ala ULLAHI ma sma't-kum! Tash y-lig? wntuma “lash.” Performance 135 ‘sma’ ash ghadya n-gul w ‘al ‘la Klam-i Lewla ‘tioni dak Ili y-tam ghadi . tudak Ili had b-l-idd dyal-u Fklawi, yetshoka b-L‘amud I-igari had-u y-ghawot bi-hum, nas hada mat ‘lich had-u zhaf bi-hum, -nafs matot sma bgitish rajal ‘gal ash kan-gul, rani KAN-TKALLoM MA‘K. nud rub‘a, khmsat I-marrat £ bul ma tshodi-h, siba, at, dakhal Khar ra khanza li-ha I-walda ima bgitish rajpl L.galiba malka-k, as-sifa morgat. ila n-khali shi ¢-tbib bagi y-kshaf ‘a dat-ak,o bin-i u bin-ok, li mshark-na kamlin, huwa rasul ssalla Jlah ‘Lih wa sallom. sh-shahadat-llah, sh-shahadat-lleh. sh-shahadat-llah, sh-shahadat. sh-shahadat: ‘An open text, this stretch of discourse transcribes as much of the voice and sensory qualities of the performance as possible, Loudness, emphasis, rhythm, and phrasing are noted in punctuation. Textually ‘marked pauses and changes in intonation evoke the jocularity of the performance. Phrasing emphasizes the parallel nature of the discourse, its artistry and rhythm, What is not captured, however, is the history that permeates these words, and the ways in which the performance breaks taboos. Performing History its can herbalist's performance exemplifies the limits of transcrip- tion, Although marketplace discourse is notoriously bawdy (subjects of ten revolving around the ills, excesses, and desires of the body], up until recently only men had social license to engage in it. Nothing in the tran: seribed performance indicates this, however. Without understanding the history of open-air performances in the public realm, we cannot fully appreciate the import of the herbalist’s gestural vocabulary as she directs