ERIC Number: ED163548
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1977
Reference Count: 0
Staging as a Rhetorical Determinant in the Unification Church.
Keaveney, Madeline M.
The nonverbal components of dramatic art, namely costuming, setting, atmosphere, lighting, and blocking, can work as rhetorical determinants in the conversion process of the Unification Church in that they alter the frame of reference (the body of settled convictions, attitudes, and values) of certain individuals. The clean-cut costuming of church members in styles reminiscent of a simpler time can be reassuring to the potential convert at the same time that it provides a distinctive new identity. By choosing settings located in beautiful natural environments, the church suggests a life that is simple and satisfying. These settings, coupled with an atmosphere that emphasizes the importance of the individual and a spirit of love, friendship, and group camaraderie, can contribute further to a person's predisposition to conversion. The church's use of lighting (bare single light bulbs are used) can blur visual and psychological images, stunt criticism of the physical environment, and suggest the ascetic value of frugality. Finally, the use of blocking (spatial distances and relationships among members and nonmembers) in the Unification Church can be persuasive in that it suggests intimacy and familial belonging among the members. (MAI)
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Unification Church
Note: Study prepared at California State University, Chico