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Like a lot he just mostly writes sorry meaningless bullshitWith special interest I mean two things First of all most of these essays serve to support the theoretic system of semiology with its own specific terms If you are not auainted with this special field even with the translator s introduction explaining the different french terms that often don t have exact english counterparts you will likely not understand or be interested in much of what Barthes writes This was my introduction to semiology and it strikes me as arbitrary It doesn t explain much of literature or visual art forms it just tries to fit them into its own system of terms Maybe it s a good system of description maybe not but it doesn t have any meaning to me And i m not averse to theory I ve happily gone my way through university and delved into theories in literature and other fields not my ownWith Image Music Text I expected interesting ideas for the layman like Hawkings A Brief History of Time but I got academically entrenched papers instead that God at the Ritz: Attraction to Infinity A Priest Physicist Talks About Science, Sex, Politics, and Religion reuire a lot of background knowledge in their unexplainedeferencesThe second way this collection is special interest is by its subjects 6 of 13 essays deal with objects that are likely not familiar to most eaders Eisenstein film stills a biblical passage Beethoven s piano music two classical singers in Panzera and Fischer Dieskau the former obscure being the object of his admiration and japanese Bunraku theatreLet me criticize some examplesNow even and above all if the image is in a certain manner the limit of meaningwhat does that mean that there can be no meaning than in an image what is the limit of meaning and why would it be the imageIntroduction to the Structural Analysis of Narratives IntroductionThe narratives of the world are numberless almost a page of meaningless introductionMust we conclude from this universality that narrative is insignificantRidiculous idea not worthy to be discussed which he goes on to do Why would significant things need to be are We can easily conjure counter examples literature love any artworks humans stylistic elementsIn short this introduction is not only pointless but also stupidWhere then are we to look for the structures of narratives Doubtless in narratives themselvesThis sentence joins the introduction in being one of the most stupid things i Reduced read for a long timeThe sentence being an order and not a serieshow what is an order or a series here I guess he means that there s order in a sentence it s not just aandom series but a series can also have order This is just another example of Barthes throwing terms at you without explanation Like the following completely unexplained euationThe levels are operationsAt some point Barthes makes the point that linguists only look at single sentences and that discourse operates as a higher level of language than linguists by being organized over multiple sentences Then he contradicts himself by saying that this higher discourse conception is now developed by linguists It seems Barthes has a naive view of linguisticsAccording to now developed by linguists It seems Barthes has a naive view of linguisticsAccording to code the fantasmatic that is to say corporal image which guided the performer was that of a song spun out inwardlyphantasmatic whyever Barthes or the translator chose that word means incorporeal so a contradiction Also piano pieces are not songs especially not Beethoven piano pieces This whole essay is a bit naive musically Why does Barthes try himself in writing about music and even in music criticism in The Grain of Voiceto want to play Beethoven is to see oneself as the conductor of an orchestraNope Polyphonic piano pieces and orchestral works are two completely different worldsI don t see how this collection of essays is so popular even the film theory is completely isolated and teaches you nothing about how film works Though i was too disgusted not to skim some of the essays about visuals after a while so I d be glad to be corrected What I sounded like at 20 Bong Double Betrayal rip The author s dead fuckers Turn left Hey wanna go back to mine Sound of vintage ballet flats moving across the hardwood as far away from my pathetic ass as uickly as possibleSo yeah I dead a bunch of these before It s a lot of vintage Barthes which is always a good time Now some of the deeper semiotic dives the ones where it gets into hardcore full contact structuralism not for me Nor are the essays about music eally because with are exceptions music seems damn near impossible to theorize about other than in explicit music theory and musicological terms and frankly I don t know enough about the canon of classical music to address his points intelligently But the The Magistrates' Court: An Introduction (Fifth Edition) rest are very much worth your time I think like many people I firstead The Death of the Author as a stand alone essay a while before taking the time to engage with Barthes project it s easy to take that particular essay as a kind of synecdochic stand in for the whole of Barthes work and also to slide immediately from the death of the author and the efusal of God and his hypostases eason science law into poststructuralism 147 But trite as this may be to point out the other essays are also good I think Introduction to the Structural Analysis of Narratives is actually the heart of this book its longest and most systematic essay It could be ead #As A Less Provocative # a less provocative of The Death of the Author It also pairs very well with The Struggle with the Angel which I actually thought was the most enjoyable essay in here He clarifies that his eactions to this text are those of a The Crimson Thread: A Retelling of Rumpelstiltskin reader today which means he approaches the biblical passage in a way thateproduces certain impr. O text an attention to the very ‘grain’ of signifying activity and the desire to follow – in literature image film song and theatre – whatever turns displaces shifts dispersesStephen Heath whose translation has been described as ‘skilful and eadable’ TLS and Essions and No Beast So Fierce: The Terrifying True Story of the Champawat Tiger, the Deadliest Animal in History reactions that we can much easilyecognise in ourselves even if he works them out in sophisticated detail This is partly a conseuence of an approach that as he admits is only the working out of a new system of analysis maybe even one that just collages what is being developed Close to the Land: The Way We Lived in North Carolina, 1820-1870 round about him 164 He is staking out new ground in the practice ofeading and you can follow his process pretty closely and with a Berlayar di Pamor Badik reasonable degree of satisfaction even 50 years laterI feel like the essays that deal with music Musica Practica and in particular The Grain of the Voice go underappreciated in the musicological sector of the academy There s naturally a story about the slow speed at which musicology has paid attention to semiotics as a discipline but it s interesting over and above this toead Barthes explicitly make the claim in 1972 that the simple consideration of grain in music could lead to a different history of music a history that would totally L. Munatius Plancus recast the centrality of tonality to musical history 189 Like he just comes out and says this no need for a musicologist to draw interdisciplinarily on his work they could justead it To be fair grain is an unusual concept for literary theory too thus the innovativeness of Barthes for all who Münchhausen's Pigtail, or Psychotherapy Reality read him but it s interesting that he effectively develops this concept out of an immanent problem with music criticism the problem of music criticism seliance on the adjective on its inability to analyse music in a way that moves beyond a superficial paradigm of epresentation Grain means here the gap that opens up between the music and the language as if they were ecto and verso of a sheet of paper called lied or in other words the gap between the level of the sign what I have called the paradigm of The Pink Pearl representation and the underlying level of the pure signifiers its physical dimension There s maybe an interesting unstated similarity between the concept of grain and the layers of meaning that Barthes identifies in the first two essays in this collection about the photograph the opening up of a grain is analogous to the opening up of the photograph into its linguistic or cultural messages and its photograph message which perhaps like the grain is a message without a code 17 This grain admits of an erotics but is also the domain for the application of a systematic structural investigation which would be not just a solution to one of music criticism s big problems but which was also a historical moment of development for the history of literary criticism So literary criticism was listening to the innovations of music criticism one might say while musicology was noteciprocating Inevitably profound political lucid and Migrant Resistance in Contemporary Europe richly personalI was particularly struck by his idea of the third meaning the obtuse meaning and the filmic something I have never seen or heard mentioned but ALWAYS EXPERIENCED It is as if the secret life of art were suddenly illuminated Thinks like an angel writes like the Devil Barthes is not as difficult as he initially seems to people including myself The guy has what every great critic has a sense of humour pristine prose andazor sharp insight And don t mistake him for a cut and dry New Critics level formalist I have nothing against them let me note his The Violinist and The Son of Redhead: Two Plays by Leonard Melfi reasoning is better and his ambitions greater The New Critics can be seen aseductive in certain Fairy Tales are True: Silent Reach from the Dunes to the Khumba Mela respects but if Barthes commits an act of apparenteduction it is to open whole avenues of exploration there are exceptions but that is the Galaxies in the Universe: An Introduction rule The threeeally famous essays contained here are all worthy of their acclaim especially The Death of the Author which has to be one of the most concise and cutting and connotation packed essays in literary theory Barthes is freuently misinterpreted and the victim of prejudice especially from the Anglo American academy to which I profess allegiance btw and like many other continental thinkers is often thought of as plenty pretentious and well obnoxious than he actually is The best thing about Barthes writing is that it is loose and non conformist to the usual ules of academic writing while this tendency can make non conformist to the usual ules of academic writing while this tendency can make harder to follow than the clearer philosophers and critics in the Anglo American tradition Barthes is a cut above most of his contemporary continental thinkers and deserves the attention but scarcely the vitriolic attacks he eceives This is a classic work of critical theory by the French writer Roland Barthes It is by turn illuminating bewildering infuriating contradictory and evelatory For graphic designes the most elevant essays are The Rhetoric of the Image about the signification of commercial photography and The Death of the Author and From Work to Text about new models of eading and Death of the Author and From Work to Text about new models of Americana: The Kinks, the Riff, the Road: The Story reading and The last two piece in particular had a big impact on experimental design in the late 80s and early 90s Those were some inventive times It s my firist time toead critical essays so it s alittle bit hard to jugeThe firist two articles are about photographey but the most amazing essays was the death of the author and music practisa The death of the author is adopting what most modern critics like TS Eliot adopted about focusing on the work of art itself ather than the author his motives or feelings it was something I used to believe that the authors personality is showing in his writes but actully writing is escaping from the writers personalitymusic practisa is involving bethoven s works and it drew mt attentiont to very important thing is the disappearance of the ameutres and it s only the pure professionals and only listners which threatnes the music education issue. ??uite brilliant’ TES is the author of Vertige du déplacement a study of Barthes His selection of essays each important in its own ight also serves as ‘the best introduction so far to Barthes’ career as the slayer of contemporary myths’ John Sturrock New Statesma. Image Music TextBrilliant stuff I want to be a philosopher when up Image Music Text comprises a number texts by Roland Barthes edition and selection by Stephen Heath The covered are broad in both content and subject anging from considerations on Eisenstein s photograms with particular incidence and considerations on Eisenstein s decorative meaning to a textual analysis of The struggle with the angel a passage from GenesisBarthes is with no uestion both a writer and a teacher despite and in concordance with the sort of dichotomy created by him in the last text in the book Writers Intellectuals Teachers Here he argues that the fundamental differences between writing static and discourse dynamic with teaching as an example make the former explicitly different from the latter even though writing always tries to model discourse In spite of this Barthes writing still feels fairly modern as far as essays are concerned for a static piece of text Image Music Text does not feel old The first few four essays are devoted to the analysis of images with focus on semiology and attempting to establish a structural analysis framework for images Rhetoric of the Image is especially good and a good example of this while being a worthy introduction to the basic principles of the semiology in images Apart from this The Third Meaning also stands out as a new way to eadinterpret images using Eisenstein s photograms with an additional meaning the first two here are the obvious meanings as they come to seek out the eader the obtuse meaning that of the signifier without a signified that which makes the distinction between the expression authentic and the disguise inauthentic thinner the filmic meaning This segues nicely into Diderot Brecht Eisentstein which would in a way combine this third meaning and the other two as well into a new form of criticism which considers simultaneously the vertical ie which and how different elementssignifierssignifieds are arranged in an image and horizontal axis ie a time characteristic that allows the image to move from the pregnant moment where it permanently liesThe fifth essay Introduction to the Structural Analysis of Narrative is one of my favourite pieces in Image Music Text as this was my one true introduction to structural analysis in general this to me should have been the first text in the book Oddly enough this transitions into The Struggle With the Angel a textual ie the possible interpretations of what is written in the text and not eally structural as Barthes mentions analysis The Death of the Author comes next which is Barthes s best known work In essence it is the first push against the critic s inherent necessity still very much alive today to link aesthetics to ethics and to incorporate an author s life and intentions into whatever work he is Lost Treasure reviewing Barthes is firmly against this because it greatlyeduces the search space for a text s interpretations trying to create objectivity where to him there should be none I have absolutely nothing against this perspective and can happily agree with it in fact this stands out as one of my favourite texts from the book This makes way for From Work to Text where Barthes further develops this thought calling for the shift from the interpretation of the work ie something that semiologically holds a single correct interpretation to the text ie something that holds not only several meanings but also several layers of meanings arranged into several different levels creating what to me feels a lot like a nicely done marriage between Victorian Fashions: A Pictorial Archive, 965 Illustrations reductionism and emerging propertiesTheemainder of the texts that I did not mention did not cause much of an impression on me when compared with the ones mentioned In particular those about the analysis of audio aesthetics were perhaps the dullest good eads nonetheless but they do break the natural flow of Image Music Text This is of course a conseuence of how comprehensive this book is something that if you try to summarise Barthes work is not eally a choice but a necessity In summary I can safely say this was one hell of a journey but definitely a worthy one if the topic of structuralismsemiology interests you Barthes is a giant on these fields and while it may be a complicated Captain Corellis Mandolin read it is also a very worthy introduction Alas it does have it s shortfalls The language while clear holds several terms that made meeread the same sentence several timeseventually give up and Google whatever they meant A small glossary for these terms would have been than welcome but not strictly necessary with the advent of the Internet Something that also made this a bit complicated to Landscapes of the Chinese Soul read wereeferences to the work of others contemporary to Barthes which if you have no particular clue about who they are only make the whole thing a bit confusing Mostly bullshit special interest vague unproductive theories bad writing style lack of logic and layman Landscapes of the Chinese Soul: The Enduring Presence of the Cultural Revolution readabilityEven with the non special interest essays I wasn t impressed The writing style is simply bad in my opinion there are way too many parentheses sometimes as many as normal text and his arguments lack structure ironically and logic If iecall correctly i never saw a single definition of a term even in The Grain of the Voice he only defines grain very late after using it and only vaguelyBarthes simply likes to let his creative associative powers loose on adjectives terms and elations jumping from one to the next without showing a logical connection between themAnd even in The Death of the Author which seems to have become famous and whose idea he seems to be credited with an idea Image Music Text brings together major essays by Roland Barthes on the structural analysis of narrative and on issues in literary theory on the semiotics of photograph and film and on the practice of music and voiceThroughout the volume uns a constant movement from work