Are you convinced that sword swallowing is an art and not a trick?

Use this forum to discuss the May 2018 Book of the Month, "The Sword Swallower and a Chico Kid" by Gary Robinson
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RedLetter
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Re: Are you convinced that sword swallowing is an art and not a trick?

Post by RedLetter » 15 Jun 2018, 10:25

It appears that you have actually asked two separate questions between the title of this and what you actually ask in the body of the question.

For the first part "Are you convinced that sword swallowing is an art and not a trick? I would have to say yes, I do believe it is an art. Simply because the performer actually DOES swallow the sword. It is not a slight of hand like a magician showing a card trick.

That leads e into your second question, "Do you believe it can be taught?" Yes, it would have to be taught. And it would take lots and lots of practice, with numerous injuries, I suspect. So to practice and learn to be good at sword swallowing would have to be an art, because not everyone can do it.

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Post by Rosemary Okoko » 15 Jun 2018, 12:19

I think in this case sword swallowing is a necessary art that is to be applied in the trick.

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Post by Cardinalsparrow » 15 Jun 2018, 17:01

I think sword swallowing is an art. Even if it's a trick, it sure does require a lot of skill and concentration...

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Post by MollyEnter » 18 Jun 2018, 03:11

My opinion is that sword swallowing is an art and a sport. It takes physical agility and a showman's performance to really capture an audience.
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Post by Samy Lax » 19 Jun 2018, 11:59

If you are able to play with a knife in your mouth, it surely means that it there's less risk in having it go down your throat. And you can't fake it. There's definitely art involved more than trick.
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Post by Job Njoroge » 20 Jun 2018, 07:23

PlanetHauth wrote:
03 May 2018, 06:26
I believe your question in the title of the post and your question in the body of your post are two different questions, so I'm going to treat them as such.

I'll start with the question in the title:
Are you convinced that sword swallowing is an art and not a trick?
Wikipedia (and I'm in agreement with them) defines art as
a diverse range of human activities in creating visual, auditory or performing artifacts (artworks), expressing the author's imaginative or technical skill, intended to be appreciated for their beauty or emotional power.
(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Art). So, I would say that, yes, sword swallowing is an art according to this definition.

The Google dictionary defines "trick" as
a cunning act or scheme intended to deceive or outwit someone.
and
a skilful act performed for entertainment or amusement.
(https://www.google.co.jp/search?rlz=1C1 ... dobs=trick). Based on this definition, sword swallowing could really fall under either category. If it's true, honest sword swallowing then it's just entertainment. If it's not actual sword swallowing, and the performer has every intention of passing it off as real sword swallowing (I'm not accounting for comedic acts here), then it is absolutely a deception.

So, if Duke is actually swallowing swords, then it could be considered an art and a trick. Granted, I think this particular performance being considered art could be debatable. However, if Duke is pretending to swallow swords with the express intent on deceiving his audience into believing he's doing the real thing, and not for comedic purposes, then it's just a scheme.

As for your question posed in the body of your post,
Do you believe that sword swallowing is a practice that can actually be taught and learned?
, it is in fact a skill that can be taught and learned. This Wikipedia page even gives a brief history on it (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sword_swallowing). You can even Google the performance and read other sources about it. That said, Vg345 is absolutely correct. Sword swallowing is extremely dangerous and can result in injury, sometimes fatal. The Wikipedia page I linked above briefly covers injuries too.

P.S. I only reference Wikipedia, because it offers brief reading and sources for further perusal in one is so inclined.
I would not buy this as a genuine art . This is because it is almost impossible to do it hence a trick to me.

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Post by TaaraLynn » 20 Jun 2018, 13:59

I'm going with skill. That is something I believe since I was a young one. And honestly, it came from watching Aladdin. I always thought the sword swallower in that, though animated, just knew how to stretch and open his throat just so.
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Post by GabbiV » 20 Jun 2018, 14:12

Continually forcing your body to adapt to (multiple) swords, trick or not, is a testament to how much punishment human flesh can take. Look on with respect.

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Post by PlanetHauth » 21 Jun 2018, 01:10

Job Njoroge wrote:
20 Jun 2018, 07:23
PlanetHauth wrote:
03 May 2018, 06:26
I believe your question in the title of the post and your question in the body of your post are two different questions, so I'm going to treat them as such.

I'll start with the question in the title:
Are you convinced that sword swallowing is an art and not a trick?
Wikipedia (and I'm in agreement with them) defines art as
a diverse range of human activities in creating visual, auditory or performing artifacts (artworks), expressing the author's imaginative or technical skill, intended to be appreciated for their beauty or emotional power.
(https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Art). So, I would say that, yes, sword swallowing is an art according to this definition.

The Google dictionary defines "trick" as
a cunning act or scheme intended to deceive or outwit someone.
and
a skilful act performed for entertainment or amusement.
(https://www.google.co.jp/search?rlz=1C1 ... dobs=trick). Based on this definition, sword swallowing could really fall under either category. If it's true, honest sword swallowing then it's just entertainment. If it's not actual sword swallowing, and the performer has every intention of passing it off as real sword swallowing (I'm not accounting for comedic acts here), then it is absolutely a deception.

So, if Duke is actually swallowing swords, then it could be considered an art and a trick. Granted, I think this particular performance being considered art could be debatable. However, if Duke is pretending to swallow swords with the express intent on deceiving his audience into believing he's doing the real thing, and not for comedic purposes, then it's just a scheme.

As for your question posed in the body of your post,
Do you believe that sword swallowing is a practice that can actually be taught and learned?
, it is in fact a skill that can be taught and learned. This Wikipedia page even gives a brief history on it (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sword_swallowing). You can even Google the performance and read other sources about it. That said, Vg345 is absolutely correct. Sword swallowing is extremely dangerous and can result in injury, sometimes fatal. The Wikipedia page I linked above briefly covers injuries too.

P.S. I only reference Wikipedia, because it offers brief reading and sources for further perusal in one is so inclined.
I would not buy this as a genuine art . This is because it is almost impossible to do it hence a trick to me.
It isn't impossible, or near impossible to swallow swords, though. It's quite possible, and the links I've provided show as much.
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Post by Nanig83006 » 21 Jun 2018, 17:54

I'd like to hope it's a trick. Logic would suggest it has to be, considering the length of the swords used, but practice is suppose to make perfect. I'm sure one could teach themself (or others) such a skill, but there is no room for error in something like this. It is likely to be fatal if there is any accident, which I hope there never is.

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Post by Ayomaamianda » 23 Jun 2018, 03:00

How they do it is a mystery to me but i don't think sword swallowing is a trick. Its a skill that can be learned.

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Post by Abiba Alice » 23 Jun 2018, 10:42

Sword swallowing is a complex and dangerous act. I believe one has to get training to learn how to relax their throat enough and allow the blade to slide down....I'm convinced it's an art

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Post by Kmykel » 23 Jun 2018, 11:15

Why can't a trick be artful? There's beauty in deception, and it's definitely a skill to pull the wool over people's eyes. One has to be a good showman, while not letting onto the illusion they're conveying. I consider it to be a fine art.

Sword swallowing is definitely a performance art. It's grotesquely beautiful.

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Post by KatSims92 » 26 Jun 2018, 14:42

There are stranger things and activities in this world, so I do think sword swallowing can be both a magical illusion and a trick to learn. Albeit it's an incredibly odd trick, and I don't see its appeal, but I suppose it may be possible.

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Post by Cotwani » 28 Jun 2018, 06:09

Logic would make me think it is a trick. But the way Duke carries on through the book, the fact that many of his colleagues died in the act, and the fact that he himself was injured, makes me reluctantly think, it is a dangerous art!

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