Ripping on People: The Traditional and Postmodern Satire of

Ripping on People: The Traditional and Postmodern Satire of "South Park".

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In the past twenty years, animated television has become a major force by satirizing contemporary culture. Beginning with The Simpsons, primetime animated programming has played a large role in subverting the norms of family, government, economics, and religion. One of the most successful animated satires is South Park (1997-??). Created by Trey Parker and Matt Stone, the show is successful as a satire because it displays characteristics of the genre. The creators use parody, grotesque humor, and scatology to echo satires of the past. However, the show is also easily distinguishable from classical satire because the show exists in a different era of literature, an era in which televisual literacy has become important and satirists abstain from proposing solutions for the problems that they satirize. Because the show so effectively criticizes and subverts postmodern society, I contend that the show does for our society what satirists like Chaucer, Rabelais, Swift, Byron, and Twain did for theirs---it provides a dissident voice for those who control the public discourse, thereby offering an alternate viewpoint for our culture.Additionally, the satire of South Park may actually be more balanced than those of past satirists because Parker and ... This rapid-action satire has more in common with political cartoons or short satirical essays than longer works that are in theanbsp;...

Title:Ripping on People: The Traditional and Postmodern Satire of "South Park".
Publisher:ProQuest - 2008


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