Parody in the Género chico
(St. Francis College, USA)
Parody, the festive imitation of a literary work, genre or style, originated in ancient times and continues to the present day. A particularly delightful form flourished in Spain during the later years of the nineteenth century and the early part of the twentieth. This was the parody of the género chico or "small genre," a one-act theatrical work with or without music. Compositions with spoken dialogue as well as music afforded two dimensions to the art of the parodist, since both elements could be distorted in a comical way. Inspiration was drawn from Spanish and foreign plays, operas, operettas and zarzuelas. Parody in the Género chico describes the way in which this imitation was done; the text is in English with many illustrative quotations in Spanish and a few other languages.
Patricia Bentivegna is Professor Emerita of Spanish in the Department of Foreign Languages at St. Francis College, USA.
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