Madeline Steiner, University of South Carolina

Tus neeg ua yeeb yam txaus ntshai tau dhau los ua qhov txaus ntshai heev.

Featuring Art the Clown ua tus neeg phem tseem ceeb, Damien Leone zaj yeeb yaj kiab tshiab "Ntshai 2” yog qhov txaus ntshai heev uas muaj cov lus ceeb toom ntawm cov neeg saib ntuav thiab dhau mus hauv theatre. Thiab txhua txhua hnub Halloween, koj yuav pom cov neeg ua phem phem stalking haunted tsev attractions los yog dag-los-tus neeg kho mob hnav ris tsho li Pennywise, tus phem clown los ntawm Stephen King's "Nws."

Nws tuaj yeem nyuaj rau kev xav txog lub sijhawm uas cov neeg ua yeeb yam tau caw cov menyuam yaus hnub yug thiab pawg ntseeg hauv tsev kho mob - tsis txhob ntshai, tab sis ua kom zoo siab thiab lom zem. Rau ntau lub xyoo pua 20th, qhov no yog qhov txheem luag hauj lwm ntawm clown.

Txawm li cas los xij, clowns yeej ib txwm muaj qhov tsaus ntuj. Ua ntej xyoo pua 20th, clowns nyob rau hauv American circuses feem ntau suav hais tias yog ib hom kev lom zem rau cov neeg laus.

In kuv tus kheej tshawb fawb nyob rau hauv keeb kwm ntawm lub xyoo pua 19th circus, kuv siv sij hawm ntau nyob rau hauv archives qhov twg kuv niaj hnub tuaj hla vintage duab ntawm clowns.

Tam sim no, kuv tsis xav txog kuv tus kheej ntshai clowns. Qhov tseeb, kuv ib txwm sim ua kom cov neeg hais tias niaj hnub no yog clowns cov kws ua yeeb yam loj nrog ntau qhov kev cob qhia hauv lawv cov khoom siv tes ua. Tab sis txawm tias kuv yuav tsum lees tias cov neeg ua yeeb yam uas kuv hla dhau los ntawm cov qub circuses muab rau kuv heebie-jeebies.

Drunken, lewd clowns nyob rau hauv luag

Rau feem ntau ntawm lub xyoo pua puv 19, circuses yog me me, ib lub nplhaib uas cov neeg tuaj saib tuaj yeem hnov ​​​​cov neeg ua yeeb yam hais lus.

Cov yeeb yam no tau kev rowdy nyob rau hauv uas cov neeg tuaj saib muaj kev ywj pheej los qw, boo thiab yws ntawm cov neeg ua yeeb yam. Feem ntau, clowns yuav koom nrog banter nrog stoic ringmaster, uas feem ntau yog lub hom phiaj rau clowns 'pranks. Qiv comedic kab lig kev cai los ntawm blackface minstrel qhia, circus clowns siv puns, tsis sequiturs thiab exaggerated burlesque lom zem.

Ib tug heev nrov clown ua, uas Mark Twain piav qhia Nyob rau hauv "Lub Adventures ntawm Huckleberry Finn," koom nrog ib tug ua yeeb yam disguised raws li ib tug neeg qaug cawv circus patron uas xav tsis thoob cov neeg tuaj saib los ntawm kev nkag mus rau lub nplhaib thiab clumsily sim caij ib tug ntawm cov yeeb yam nees ua ntej dramatically qhia nws tus kheej los ua ib feem ntawm cov yeeb yam. Nto moo 19-xyoo pua clown Dan Rice yog paub txog suav nrog kev hais lus hauv zos thiab kev tawm tswv yim nom tswv hauv nws qhov kev ua yeeb yam thiab ua tus neeg muaj npe nrov hauv txhua lub nroog nws tau mus xyuas.

Cov lus tso dag uas lawv tau hais yog feem ntau misogynistic thiab tag nrho ntawm kev sib deev ob-entendres, uas tsis yog ib qho teeb meem vim hais tias circus cov neeg tuaj saib lub sij hawm no feem ntau yog cov neeg laus thiab cov txiv neej. Thaum ntawd, circuses yog ib tug stigmatized daim ntawv ntawm kev lom zem nyob rau hauv Teb Chaws Asmeskas, suav hais tias tsis muaj npe rau lawv cov koom haum nrog kev twv txiaj, kev sib tw, kev ua yeeb yam tsis txaus ntseeg, kev hais lus phem thiab cawv. Cov thawj coj hauv lub Koom Txoos tsis tu ncua ceeb toom lawv cov koom txoos kom tsis txhob mus koom kev ua yeeb yam. Qee lub xeev txawm muaj txoj cai txwv tsis pub circuses tag nrho.

Daim ntawv tshaj tawm circus featuring clowns koom nrog ntau yam hijinks.
Clowns nyob rau hauv lub xyoo pua puv 19 yog feem ntau ua phem, hais lus phem. Lub tsev qiv ntawv ntawm Congress

Clowns ua ib feem hauv lub circus 'sedy lub koob npe nrov.

Tus neeg ua yeeb yam PT Barnum sau tseg ib feem ntawm qhov kev thov rov hais dua ntawm lub circuses "muaj cov neeg ua yeeb yam tsis zoo nkauj, hais txog nrog cov lus hais lus tsis zoo thiab qhia tawm." Clowns kuj hloov pauv poj niam txiv neej txoj cai, nrog ntau qhov tshwm sim hauv luag, feem ntau exaggerating tus poj niam daim duab nrog cartoonishly loj fake ob lub mis.

Nyob rau hauv lub xyoo pua puv 19, qee lub circuses tseem muaj lub tsev pheeb suab cais uas muaj "cooch show." Cov txiv neej patrons raug caw, them nqi, saib cov poj niam seev cev thiab strip.

Circus historian Janet Davis sau tseg tias qee qhov kev ua yeeb yam no suav nrog cov neeg ua yeeb yam hauv kev rub "ua si ntawm poj niam txiv neej-bending pranks ntawm cov txiv neej ruam uas xav pom poj niam liab qab." Nyob rau hauv qhov kev tshwm sim tsis txaus ntseeg, Davis tseem sau tseg tias ntawm qee qhov kev ua yeeb yam hauv tsev noj mov, cov neeg ua yeeb yam gay tau ntsib kev sib deev nrog txiv neej cov neeg tuaj saib "thaum lub sijhawm thiab tom qab tsis qhia npe neeg coob coob."

Cov clowns, txaus nws hais, tsis yog rau menyuam yaus.

Clowns ntxuav lawv txoj cai

Nws tsis yog tiag tiag txog thaum xyoo 1880 thiab 1890s, thaum kev lom zem ua yeeb yam nyiam Barnum tau siv zog los "ntxuav" lub circus kos duab nyob rau hauv ib tug loj cov neeg tuaj saib, uas clowns tiag tiag koom nrog cov me nyuam.

Tom qab circuses pib taug kev los ntawm kev tsheb ciav hlau, lawv tuaj yeem nqa cov khoom siv ntxiv, tso cai rau lawv nthuav tawm ntawm ib lub nplhaib mus rau peb. Cov neeg tuaj saib tsis tuaj yeem hnov ​​​​cov neeg ua yeeb yam ntxiv lawm, yog li tus neeg ua yeeb yam tau dhau los ua tus neeg ua yeeb yam pantomime, tshem tawm cov lus tsis zoo lossis hais lus.

Circus tswv, aiming kom tau nyiaj ntau npaum li sai tau, sim mus rau lub tsev hais plaub cov neeg tuaj saib, nrog rau cov poj niam thiab cov me nyuam. Qhov ntawd tsim nyog tshem tawm cov kev ua phem phem thiab saib xyuas lawv cov neeg ua haujlwm tus cwj pwm.

Circus advertisement featuring kos duab ntawm clowns thiab tsiaj.
Ntawm cov lus qhia ntawm PT Barnum, clowns ua palatable rau cov tsev neeg nrog cov menyuam yaus. Bettmann / Getty Dluab

Cov yeeb yam nrog lub zog nyob ruaj khov tshaj plaws, zoo li Barnum & Bailey's Greatest Show hauv ntiaj teb, yog hu ua "Sunday school" qhia, pub dawb ntawm cov ntsiab lus tsis pom zoo. Lawv ua tiav lawv tus kheej ua tus purveyors ntawm qhov zoo, huv si lom zem.

Clowns tau ua lub luag haujlwm hauv qhov kev hloov pauv no. Nrog rau tam sim no-tsim kev ua yeeb yam tsom rau lub cev kev lom zem, lawv qhov kev ua yeeb yam tau yooj yim rau cov me nyuam to taub. Clowns tseem yog tricksters, tab sis lawv cov slapstick comedy tau pom tias txhua yam hauv kev lom zem zoo.

Qhov no tau muaj txiaj ntsig ntev. Clowns lom zem cov tsev neeg ntawm lub circus, thiab, raws li kev lom zem tsiv mus rau zaj duab xis thiab TV, cov me nyuam-phooj ywg clowns ua raws li ntawd. Clowns tau dhau los ua qhov tseem ceeb ntawm cov menyuam yaus kev lom zem hauv xyoo pua 20th. Ib tug nrov TV program featuring Bozo tus Clown khiav tau 40 xyoo, txij xyoo 1960 txog xyoo 2001. Pib xyoo 1980, cov neeg ua yeeb yam tau los ua cov neeg tuaj xyuas cov tsev kho mob me nyuam tsis tu ncua los txhawb cov neeg mob hluas. Thiab tuam txhab uas muag zoo li McDonald's siv clowns ua mascots los ua kom lawv cov npe txaus siab rau cov menyuam yaus.

Tab sis nyob rau hauv lub xyoo pua 21st, muaj ib tug ntse turnaround. Kev tshawb 2008 xaus lus tias "clowns yog universally disliked" los ntawm cov me nyuam hnub no. Qee qhov taw qhia rau clown-tig-serial killer john wayne gacy raws li qhov hloov pauv, thaum lwm tus tuaj yeem liam Stephen King's "Nws" rau yoking clowns rau ntshai heev.

Raws li kev tshuaj xyuas keeb kwm ntawm American circus, nws yuav luag zoo li lub sij hawm nyob rau hauv lub xyoo pua 20th thaum clowns tau hlub los ntawm cov me nyuam deviated los ntawm tus qauv. Niaj hnub no cov neeg txaus ntshai clowns tsis yog qhov sib txawv ntawm kev coj noj coj ua, tab sis rov qab los rau nws.

Madeline Steiner, Postdoctoral Fellow of History, University of South Carolina

Tsab ntawv xov xwm no tau muab tshaj tawm los ntawm lub sib tham raws li Tsab Ntawv Tso Cai Muab Tso Cai. Nyeem qhov thawj tsab xov xwm.