The Logic of a Festival
A festival is an event that is celebrated by a community around a characteristic aspect of the community. It can be national or local, marked by a holiday such as a mela or eid. In many cases, a festival is a public holiday, and can be very popular. For instance, the Hindus celebrate Diwali as a major festival, while the Muslims celebrate Eid al-Fitr as a holy day.
A festival typically involves rites of competition. These competitions take the form of games. A game is a contest with special rules and an uncertain outcome. The logic of a festival revolves around the idea of competition and the awards given to winners. It involves the ritual paradigm and canonic rules of an ancient game. For example, the personae are assigned equal roles, while the winners are rewarded by the group. This results in a hierarchical order within a community.
A festival is a combination of multiple features, including commemoration, merrymaking, and entertainment. Regardless of the reason for its existence, festivals are always open to the public. They may be religious, seasonal, or even political. A festival is generally named after a specific theme and is centered on one aspect of the culture. This can range from a traditional celebration to a celebration of an art or tradition. In some cases, festivals are simply cultural and secular manifestations of different values.
The logic of a festival can also be complex, combining features of commemoration, merry-making, and entertainment. A festival is often a celebration of a rite. A festival can be sacred or secular, private or public, or a mixture of all three. A festival can be cultural, religious, or even artistic. It can even be a symbol of a particular holiday or a religious observance.
The rites of a festival can be very different. In some cultures, festivals are not religious at all, but a day when organized events are held. For example, a spring festival can feature carnival rides and delicious spring foods, while a music festival may be more about music or art. For many cultures, a festival is a day where people gather and celebrate an important event or date. The logic behind a festival is quite complex, and its rites vary from one culture to another.
A festival may be religious, secular, or purely secular, but the most common kind of festival is an annual celebration. A festival can be a public event or private, and can be sacred or profane. Some festivals are cultural and religious, but are primarily a time for merry-making and entertainment. They can be secular or non-religious, and can be both private or public. A festival can be a celebration of a season or event.