2010 Student Research Conference:
23rd Annual Student Research Conference

Polysemous Passion: A Semiotic Analysis of the Passions within Argentine Tango
Grant M. Berry
Prof. Shirley McKamie, Faculty Mentor

Upon the mention of the Argentine tango, one word consistently comes to mind: passion. Often, this word is associated with sexual excitation, love, or desire, but none of these is sufficient to describe the complex interactions and emotions related to the tango. However, when passion is understood philosophically, particularly through Spinoza's theories, one can properly associate the tango with this term. Utilizing an analysis based on semiotics, the study of signs, one can examine the three underlying components of Argentine tango-- the lyrics, the music, and the dance-- to determine both how signs are communicated within these domains and how their interaction generates passionate forces and higher-order composite signs capable of socio-cultural signification.

Keywords: Semiotics, Spanish, Tango, Passion, Music, Text Painting, Lunfardo, Spinoza


Presentation Type: Oral Paper

Session: 5-2
Location: MG 1090
Time: 8:15

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