LANGUAGE IN INDIA

Strength for Today and Bright Hope for Tomorrow

Volume 11 : 11 November 2011
ISSN 1930-2940

Managing Editor: M. S. Thirumalai, Ph.D.
Editors: B. Mallikarjun, Ph.D.
         Sam Mohanlal, Ph.D.
         B. A. Sharada, Ph.D.
         A. R. Fatihi, Ph.D.
         Lakhan Gusain, Ph.D.
         Jennifer Marie Bayer, Ph.D.
         S. M. Ravichandran, Ph.D.
         G. Baskaran, Ph.D.
         L. Ramamoorthy, Ph.D.


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Analysing Tariq Rahmanís Story The Dance of the Beards in the Light of Barthesí Narrative Codes

Muhammad Saleem, M.Phil.


Abstract

This study analyses Tariq Rahmanís story The Dance of the Beards in the light of Roland Barthesí poststructural approach to narratology. Research, within this theoretical framework, is supposed to aim at critical rendering of the formation, character, role and function of the five Barthesian codes: proairetic, hermeneutic, semic, symbolic and cultural. Interconnectedness of these narrative codes allows them to overlap each other to constitute a coherent text as they are thought, in Barthesian vocabulary, as a basic material to the realization of any cultural product as an artistic piece. Following Barthesí poststructural analysis of narrative carried out in his famous book S/Z, the whole body of the targeted text will be cut into short but contiguous pieces; these linguistic segments work as a unit of analysis in this research; they may consist of a word, phrase, clause and even a complete paragraph depending upon the researcherís discernment but one thing is ensured that each lexia does have at least one meaning in it.

In this starred text, a star (*) is put before a code detected in the reading unit. The Barthesian codes within which lexias are placed work skillfully not only to realize the weave of an artistic composition in the text they also behave as five containers of meanings formed and evolved in a particular social formation.

The analysis of a text via present poststructural theoretical paradigm is in fact a process of deconstruction; the exhaustive interpretation of a focused material with reference to narrative codes is an authentic activity to decode the socially constructed text letting the meanings flow out exhaustively and effectively.

Key Words: Barthesí Narrative Codes, Poststructural Approach to Narratology, Five Codes

1. Introduction

Roland Barthes applied the proairetic, hermeneutic, semic, symbolic and cultural codes to Balzacís novella Sarrasine for its exhaustive textual analysis. This poststructural way of narrative analysis is much appreciated for the interpretation and explanation of a literary composition. This new and comprehensive mode of analysis inspired many researchers and critics to make its application to plural texts.


This is only the beginning part of the article. PLEASE CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE IN PRINTER-FRIENDLY VERSION.


Muhammad Saleem, M.Phil.
Assistant Professor of English
Government Postgraduate College Sheikhupura
Pakistan
zaryabsaleem@gmail.com

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