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Recitation, Speech Acts, and Declamation


Ancient Egyptian texts have been found with instructions on how they should be performed. Recitation, speech acts, and declamation are related to the action of speaking out loud in religious-ritual and juridical contexts, as well as for entertainment. Recitations are used in contexts that demand a correct wording or the power of words as utterance. Speech acts are performative or operative texts, which have an effect by being spoken out loud and result in a change of the persons or objects that are addressed by the text. Declamations are a performance of literary compositions to an audience. The basis on which texts can be considered as part of a recitation, speech act, or declamation are not only in-text terms but also indications of their performance-context, their localization in an accessible place, and their performance by an authorized person.

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