What is it about?

Abstract: Inspired by the character of Gelsomina from La Strada, this article deals with the figure of the female clown in the contemporary neo-burlesque. Beloved figures in Fellini’s world, clowns are a cultural symbol of failing, stumbling, being silly and being imperfect, as well as a metaphor for overstepping of social norms and rules. The article aims to bring a feminist focus to Fellini’s circus figures and discusses with the increasingly popularity of female clowns within the contemporary neo-burlesque scene. The central question posed by this article is whether these burlesque clowns can transform Fellini’s most famous clown Gelsomina ‐ fragile, tragic and asexual ‐ into a powerful and sexy female clown. In their role as clownish burlesque performers, these women overstep norms of behaviour through the act of clowning itself through their role as clowning women and as women celebrating sexual pleasure in erotic burlesque performance.

Featured Image

Why is it important?

It is important to dare, like Fellini, to see the magic of the circus in life and to go through the world, like Gelsomina, with "eyes wide open"

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Gelsomina transgressed: A subversion of Fellini’s world in the clownish neo-burlesque, Journal of Italian Cinema and Media Studies, January 2021, Intellect,
DOI: 10.1386/jicms_00051_1.
You can read the full text:



The following have contributed to this page