Barthes' Argument In The Death Of The Author

2177 words - 9 pages

The Function of Subject as Signified

Barthes’ argument in The Death of the Author, as it is clarified by
the structuralist approach of Ferdinand de Saussure and the
manifestations of his linguistic system adapted by Jacques Lacan and
Jacques Derrida, is composed of an ultimate dismissal of the
signification of a text in favor of the ratification of the function of the
subject. Once this function is ascertained, Barthes shifts his impetus to
the antiquation of the author’s place in general. The function of the
subject that Barthes concludes is the concatenation of the signifier of a
text for the purpose of the unification of its constitution.
The application of Ferdinand de Saussure’s theories to Barthes’
notion and in general to literary critique, as evident from his study in
the realm of semiotics in his Course in General Linguistics, is related to
the complexity of the sign within the bounds of the arbitrary nature
between signifier and signified. The meaning of an arbitrary relation
between signifier and signified is concretely discursive. External of
Saussure’s semiotic commitment, this study influenced the writings of
Lacan and Derrida, who conscribe to this principle of capricious
relativity in their discourses. (Ungar xii)
Within the scope of Saussurean theory, a viewpoint can be
ascertained that is conceptualized for applicability to The Death of the
Author. Saussure begins his introduction to this topic by defining
language in a way that concurs with Barthes’ use of it. Language, as
the “social side of speech, outside the individual who can never create
or modify it by himself.” This is concomitant with Barthes’ work,
particularly in his concept of the author as the subject of a text. Barthes
stresses the impersonality of any work, due to the essence of
language, that it is the quintessence of the performance and not the
author’s subjectivity. In one of his most poignant assignations of
profound semiological characterization, Saussure posits the nature of
the linguistic sign as the unity of a concept and a sound-image. For this
assumption to be relevant, it follows that language must be principally a
naming process, which would necessitate the assumption that the
entire world of ideas is already in existence, has already been enabled
in some Ecclesiastical precondition. The application of this idea to
Barthes’ work is in the very essence of the idea of the death of the
author, the rejection of the assumption that the ideas that we commit to
a certain name are the product of solely their own conjecture and its
manifestations. Saussurean logic continues on this theme to the extent
that the arbitrary nature of the sign is indicative of the situation of an
individual that operates within the linguistic system, and their
helplessness and passivity in relation to the signs that compose their
writing. For instance, a writer in this sense would be likened to a
submissive and powerless speck being...

Find Another Essay On Barthes' argument in The Death of the Author

The Death Penalty Argument Essay

2015 words - 8 pages The Death Penalty Argument "A young girl by the name of Faith Hathaway had been kidnapped in Mandeville. Two boys - - we later found out their names to be Robert L. Willie and Joseph Vaccaro - - kidnapped the girl outside of a local lounge there. And brought her up here. They raped her up the hill here. We're at Frickie's cave in Washington Parish outside of Franklinton. And then they blindfolded her and they beat her

On Roland Barthes'After The Death of the Author

1867 words - 7 pages Abstract: As Roland Barthes declares "the death of the author", the conventional author-centered theory is overthrown; the whole literary pattern goes through an unprecedented revolution as well. Thus this paper will devote to explore its influence towards three main constituents of the pattern: writer, reader and text from a post-structural perspective to see their new roles in producing meaning from literary works and the relationship among

Everyman: Perception and Treatment of Death by the Author

1277 words - 5 pages Everyman is a late medieval period allegorical drama by an unknown author. It is a morality play from the late fifteenth century with the goal of teaching a moral lesson about how people should live in order to save their souls to its audience. Some Christians embrace the idea that a person must perform good deeds as presented in Everyman to be able to have a relationship with God. “They view the death of Jesus as a means for gaining grace

Analysis of The World of Wrestling by Roland Barthes

4370 words - 17 pages capacity to know -- validating their own immersion in the light.      As Barthes suggests, the activity then is not of thought, but instead, of repetitive affirmation. The yearly festival reincorporates the "known realities" of the church year into the memories of its congregation. The Harrowing happens because it always happens; its events do not change because the narrative is merely spectacle, revealing the necessity of its outcome [it

Argument Essay in favor of abolishing the death penalty with lists "Reasons For Abolishing the Death Penalty"

4046 words - 16 pages Reasons for Abolishing the Death Penalty by Nanette FlemingThere are many things that I don't agree with in today's society, but out of all the wrong doings that take place, I believe the death penalty is the worst of them all. I am strongly against the death penalty because it violates God's rules, costs the tax payers too much money, prisoners could be wrongly convicted, and it is cruel and unusual punishment.The first reason why I do not

Argument Against the Death Penalty

1233 words - 5 pages author of "The Death Penalty Should Be Eliminated", the study released in 1993 focused on all the death penalty cases in 1991 and 1992 (77 total). This study concluded that the extra cost to the state of each execution actually carried out was $2.16 million. This means that it cost approximately $3 million dollars to try, convict, litigate, house, and then finally execute a person while it costs slightly over $1 million to secure and carry out a

Argument Against The Death Penalty

1789 words - 7 pages Once a popular punishment for crime, the death penalty has now become one of the most controversial forms of punishment. The death penalty has been abolished in most civilized nations around the world. Currently, the states in America are reanalyzing this method of punishment. There are many critics of the death penalty who find this practice of punishment barbaric and uncivilized. There are, however, many that still hold that the biblical

Argument Against The Death Penalty

2743 words - 11 pages of our criminal justice system. Anyone who believes that death is scary. And most of all… anyone who is humane. We are in the 21st century now. That means that we have had over 2000 years to realize that killing is inhumane and wrong. How is it that we can look back at the hangings that took place merely a few hundred years ago and see the merciless and appalling acts of beheading, and not learn from them? And in a predominately Christian

Argument Against The Death Penalty

1533 words - 6 pages and taking care of me. And the rest of the world can kiss my everloving ass because I'm innocent." Garrett's last words were proven right twelve years later when new evidence surfaced thanks to the emergence of DNA testing. The real criminal was found to be Leoncio Perez Rueda, and it was proven once and for all that Garrett was innocent. Our justice system put a man they knew was mentally sick and unfit to speak for himself to death and in my

Advancing the Argument, Analyzing Modes of Persuasion in Edward I. Koch’s 1985 Essay “Death and Justice”

1211 words - 5 pages What does rhetoric have to do with capital punishment? Plenty actually if you want to advance an argument as well as Edward I. Koch has in his compelling essay in support of the death penalty. Koch is introduced by the editors of the book containing his essay as “The feisty, opinionated mayor of New York City…” (handout). The editors continue describing Koch’s character and abilities as they point out that he is politician with a law degree and

Author motive in "Lord of the Flies."

558 words - 2 pages power against the message of...the human capacities for evil...the knowledge of the end of innocence" (Golding, 207). Christ's realization of sins power drove him to death. The same is true for Simon. "The Lord of the Flies" opens Simon's eyes to the flaw of human immorality and this leads to Simons death. Another powerful symbol in "The Lord of the Flies" is the conch. The conch is actually only a large shell, that when blown into makes a loud

Similar Essays

Discussion Of Roland Barthes' "Death Of The Author" And Michel Foucault's Response To This Proclaimation In His Text Of The Same Name

2020 words - 8 pages In 1968, the French social and literary critic, Roland Barthes, pronounced the death of the Author. What does this so called death mean? Furthermore, what is the author that Barthes claims is now dead?Barthes develops his assertion by describing writing as the 'destruction of every voice, of every point of origin. Writing is ... the negative where all identity is lost, starting with the very identity of the body writing' (121). Barthes assertion

Discuss The Ways In Which At Least One And Not More Than Two Of The Following Texts Demonstrate And/Or Contradict Barthes’ Theory Of The Death Of The Author: A Christmas Carol, Frankenstein, Strange...

3134 words - 13 pages classical methods of literary criticism, from the underlying theory presented in the death of the author. To present the authorial interpretations of Frankenstein as an argument against Barthes' theory is to contradict what it is trying to show; that the Author does not exist within a text, that the writing is never more than the instance of writing itself. The words are not coloured by the author's influence, but by their denotative meanings alone

The Death Of The Author Essay

2259 words - 9 pages The concept of ‘the Death of the Author’ was proposed by, French philosopher and literary theorist, Roland Barthes in his essay with the same title. He proposed a paradigm shift in the way that authorship should be viewed by the ‘Critic’. In opposition to the classical model of critique, Barthes proposed that the focus should be on the readers experience and interpretation; he proposed the idea of ‘readerly’ and ‘writerly’ texts. Rather than

Ending The Death Penalty Basic Argument Essay In Favor Of Ending The Death Penalty

443 words - 2 pages the individual has been convicted of, is a mortal sin. I believe that religious beliefs, such as the Ten Commandments, are the corner stone for our law system.Also, there is the fact that tax payers waste too much of their money with the death penalty in place. The average death penalty case is appealed three times. This means that the tax payers must pay for the same trial to be heard three times. This is a very expensive practice. Why spend the