The spanish bullfight: a choreographed and questionable spectacle

The ritual from the bullfight—“la corrida de toros” or “running from the bulls”— is among the longest standing traditions in The country. While its exact origins are unknown, bullfighting remains a convention unique towards the country, and something that symbolizes the dichotomy between human civilization (as symbolized through the matador) and nature (as symbolized through the bull). Due to its ritualistic character, bullfighting is basically considered a skill as opposed to a sport—though that is certainly challenging. Bullfighting is most widely used in Spain’s southernmost region of Andalucía, where corridas are held every spring in Sevilla’s famous Maestranza arena, and, obviously, in Pamplona—the capital of Navarra, within the north.

A matador seen with the bull in the final sequence of the bullfight. Taken in Madrid Spain.A matador seen using the bull within the final sequence from the bullfight. Drawn in Madrid The country.

Inside a traditional bullfight, three matadors fight two bulls each the matadors receive their assignments inside a morning lottery referred to as el sorteo, and also the bullfight unfolds late mid-day in a number of three functions. First, cuadrillas (groups of fighters) systemically weaken the bull as picadors, installed on horseback, lance your pet to weaken its neck muscles. Within the second act, banderilleros perform initial cape work and put banderillas (barbed darts) in to the bull. Within the third act, the matador seems and performs a ritual display using the muleta—the characteristic red cape from the bullfight—before delivering the fatal sword thrust. When matadors perform extraordinarily well, they receive one ear from the bull as an indication of victory. The very best matadors are given each of the bull’s ears and also the tail.

In Pamplona, “La Fiesta de San Fermín” adds another dimension towards the bullfighting ritual: el encierro, the standard “running from the bulls.” Every day between This summer 7-14, six bulls get through town towards the bullfighting ring as countless individuals (predominantly men) run alongside these questions harmful spectacle. These bulls are utilized later within the day within the ritual.

Bullfighting, though baked into Spanish culture, is another questionable practice, banned in Catalonia this year for animal cruelty so that as a manifestation from the northern region’s need to secede from The country. The Constitutional Court of The country overturned the ban in nov 2016—but bullfighting remains a very contested custom.

Like a ritual, the Spanish bullfight is both brutal and delightful, and it is carefully orchestrated movements are frequently likened to ballet. In the 1932 account of Spanish bullfighting, Ernest Hemingway famously authored, “Bullfighting may be the only art where the artist is at risk of dying.” For matador and bull, the bullfight is definitely an art by which both of them are made vulnerable.