Worried Lebanese

thought crumbs on lebanese and middle eastern politics

Martyrology – a definition

Posted by worriedlebanese on 19/11/2006

It’s actually more of an art than a science, and it consists of transforming dead people into martyrs. The transformation is in truth more of a transfiguration or a transubstantiation. At first the portrayal of the dead person is very noticeably modified, in a very positive and spiritual way, and then his core substance or identity is transfromed, raising it above its human condition and adding an ethereal and saintly quality to it.
This is very visible in the portrayal of some politicians who are representend in many posters alongside religious elements and visual borrowings from religious iconography.

Lately, the political class followed by the media has created a new typology with ‘living martyrs’ besides martyrs. The living martyrs are those who have survived an assassination attempt, and the martyrs are those who were not so lucky. Their death is transformed into a heroic and salvatory act. Here again we notice a religious interpretation, with a lot of reference to the redemptive quality of the blood that they spilt.


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