Concept of a Myth

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According to Barthes' understanding of ideology and myths, the concept of a myth is actually a mode of communication. In addition to the popular opinion that a myth is simply a tale told and kept alive through oral traditions, a myth actually serves as a mode of speech that is given historical significance by human history. It is not derived or a product of a process of natural tradition or a particular time frame. The idea of speech in this context is actually parallel with the concept of a particular object signifying a specific representation, such as a photograph or an essay. However, the idea of a myth is more closely related to, or under the idea of semiology, which is a specific study of signs that are not associated with their content or significance. The concept of a myth is also reliant on the concept of a motivated form, which is not innate or ‘natural'; again, it is provided by a specific history to the form of the myth itself. The formation of a myth involves not a derived or eventual process that may be described as natural; it will always be related to a historical context that gives it significance. A myth, therefore, also allows the transformation of a certain part of one's history into one's nature or established identity. The myth is something that is immersed in truth and is something that exposes the truth; it serves as speech that does not serve a purpose to achieve something or exercise power, as most aspects of speech are used to accomplish. Clarity is the end goal of any myth; it aims to allow something to become recognized without compromise or malice. Questions of ideology or subjective beliefs then become key points of debate in the context of established myths.
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