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Roland Barthes (1915 – 1980)

French literary critic, literary and social theorist, philosopher, and semiotician.
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Roland Barthes
Language is a skin: I rub my language against the other. It is as if I had words instead of fingers, or fingers at the tip of my words. My language trembles with desire.
Barthes quotes
A work has two levels of meaning: literal and concealed.
A Text, on the other hand is engaged in a movement a deferral a dilation of meaning the play of signification.
Metonymy the association of part to whole characterized the logic of the Text.
In this sense the Text is "radically symbolic" and lacks closure.
Whereas the work is understood to be traceable to a source (through a process of derivation or "filiation"), the Text is without a source the "author" a mere "guest" at the reading of the Text.

Barthes Roland quotes
The Text is not a definitive object.
Barthes Roland
The Text is plural. Which is not simply to say that it has several meanings, but that it accomplishes the very plural of meaning: an irreducible (and not merely an acceptable) plural. The Text is not a co-existence of meanings but a passage, an overcrossing; thus it answers not to an interpretation, even a liberal one, but to an explosion, a dissemination.
Roland Barthes quotes
The politician being interviewed clearly takes a great deal of trouble to imagine an ending to his sentence: and if he stopped short? His entire policy would be jeopardized!
Roland Barthes
The petit-bourgeois is a man unable to imagine the Other. If he comes face to face with him, he blinds himself, ignores and denies him, or else transforms him into himself.
Barthes Roland quotes
What the public wants is the image of passion, not passion itself.
The discourse on the Text should itself be nothing other than text, research, textual activity, since the Text is that social space which leaves no language safe, outside, nor any subject of the enunciation in position as judge, master, analyst, confessor, decoder. The theory of the Text can coincide only with a practice of writing.
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