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Ritual, Politics, And Power Essay

744 words - 3 pages

Rituals are an undetachable feature of politics, they are used to create a reality around people, it also helps us to get grasp what is happening around us. Politics is full of symbolism, and there are many more political displays including symbols and rituals than those including hard force. The author focuses only on rituals and argues that even in current industrial societies, rituals still play a vital and important role in politics.
Symbols are a part of rituals, and people use them to bring peace and order out of chaos. It is also interesting to note that symbols are deemed as naturally give, not as a construct of society, they seem as something completely natural. It is the symbols that give people a way to understand the world, but it is the people who can alter and evolve the meaning of symbols. (Kertzer, 1988)
So how do symbols have any influence on politics? By identifying with or creating a symbol, it is quite often easier to remain in a place of power. Symbols just as nationality can play a vital role in political processes, interventions, and revolutions. Many symbols make it easier to understand concepts, such as government, iron curtain, free world. Symbols ought to be studied in qualitative terms, since people are symbol producers and users, and it is impossible to measure its usage in numeric ways.
So how do rituals come into this? We can characterize them as analytical framworks through which people deal with chaos of their existence and put into order. Rituals are repetitive and socially standardized behaviours. Not all standardized and repetitive actions are rituals, if they lack the symbolic element, they are mere habits or customs. Ritual also help to connect the aspects of past, present, and future, taming time and history. Participation in rituals often involves arousal of some kind of emotion, since rituals can be part of revolutions (anger, hatred, hope), funerals (sadness, compassion), weddings or births (love, happines), and many other rituals in our lives.
Symbols provide content of rituals and they have three basic properties. Condensation of meaning is the way in which symbols „condense“ various meanings of specific symbols. Multivocality is the aspcet of symbols which explains to...

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