Roland Barthes & Myths

Topics: Mythology, Mythologies, Roland Barthes Pages: 3 (1203 words) Published: December 19, 2010
Myth Today
Barthes's many monthly contributions that were collected in his Mythologies (1957) frequently interrogated specific cultural materials in order to expose how bourgeois society asserted its values through them. For example, the portrayal of wine in French society as a robust and healthy habit is a bourgeois ideal that is contradicted by certain realities (i.e., that wine can be unhealthy and inebriating). He found semiotics, the study of signs, useful in these interrogations. Barthes explained that these bourgeois cultural myths were "second-order signs," or "connotations." A picture of a full, dark bottle is a signifier that relates to a specific signified: a fermented, alcoholic beverage. However, the bourgeoisie relate it to a new signified: the idea of healthy, robust, relaxing experience. Motivations for such manipulations vary, from a desire to sell products to a simple desire to maintain the status quo. These insights brought Barthes in line with similar Marxist theory. Barthes’s popular book Mythologies is split into two; Mythologies and Myth Today, the first section consisting of a collection of essays on selected modern myths and the second further and general analysis of the concept. At this presentation, we will get into Myth Today from Roland Barthes view. Myth Today

Since we cannot draw up the list of the dialectal forms of bourgeois myth, we can always sketch its rhetorical forms. These figures are transparent inasmuch as they do not affect the plasticity of the signifier; but they are already sufficiently conceptualized to adapt to an historical representation of the world. It is through their rhetoric that bourgeois myths outline the general prospect of this pseudo-physis which defines the dream of the contemporary bourgeois world. Here are its princible figures; 1- The Inoculation: One immunizes the contents of the collective imagination by means of a small inoculation of acknowledged evil; one thus protects it against the risk of...
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