Mythologies- Barthes on… the poor and the proletariat

Symbols in popular culture can transform the way we view social classes and their living conditions in a highly conducive way. Barthes praises Charlie Chaplin for the work he did towards the recognition of the plight of the poor. The efficaciousness of Chaplin’s work is in the combinatorial nature of his filmic semiology, his symbol…… Continue reading Mythologies- Barthes on… the poor and the proletariat

Descartes’ Meditations, 2/3

This is the second post in the series and covers the third and fourth meditations. To read the first part, which covers the first two, CLICK HERE. The Third Meditation Of God; That He Exists In the third meditation, Descartes does two things; Firstly, he takes us through a deep analysis of the objects in…… Continue reading Descartes’ Meditations, 2/3

How the advent of the camera changed history forever

The advent which was the birth of photography had a strange effect on history. History of culture, but also of our mental history. It is merely recognised as a new artform, a mode of documentation, an aid to memory. There is so much more to it than this, I would go as far as to…… Continue reading How the advent of the camera changed history forever

Mythologies- Barthes on… psychoanalysis and cleaning products

Barthes takes a different stance to the ones we have seen so far. In his essay Soap-Powders and Detergents, he is interested in the place of psychoanalysis in advertising, and in how we view the products we use in our everyday life. He does this in the context of the world’s first ‘Detergent Congress’ (1954).…… Continue reading Mythologies- Barthes on… psychoanalysis and cleaning products

Mythologies- Barthes on… literary criticism

His essay ‘bad and dumb criticism’ needs few words to explain perfectly. I’m sure we’ve all been in a situation at one point in our lives when somebody has dismissed an aspect of culture because it was ‘too intellectual’ or ‘too abstract’. Barthes argues that the critic has no right to establish this position. He…… Continue reading Mythologies- Barthes on… literary criticism

Mythologies- Barthes on… Royal Families

In Barthes’ essay The ‘Blue Blood’ Cruise, he seeks to display a disparity in culture between the working class and the royal family. The disparity is so much greater than even that between the working class and the super-rich that we struggle to imagine them living out their lives in the same way as us.…… Continue reading Mythologies- Barthes on… Royal Families

Mythologies- Barthes on… the writer on holiday

The main goal in this essay is to present the idea that social conventions can be constructed and used to sell an idea. This idea can the altered to fit the needs of the person using the image of the idea. The social convention he chooses to look at is that of the holiday. The…… Continue reading Mythologies- Barthes on… the writer on holiday

Mythologies- Barthes on… Romans in film

In his essay, Romans in films, Barthes draws his attention to the working symbols in Mankiewicz’s film Julius Caesar. One thing which he points as striking is that all the characters have fringes. This is a working symbol of the film because it unifies all of the characters, giving them a chosen ‘Roman-ness’. It is…… Continue reading Mythologies- Barthes on… Romans in film

Mythologies- Barthes on… Wrestling

I intend to cover each of the essays of Roland Barthes’ Mythologies individually. It’s a wonderful book which highlights the hidden natures and symbols of everyday life. I begin today with essay #1- wrestling. Barthes begins with wrestling exactly because of the transparency of actions and symbols. It is a spectacle of excess. Every single…… Continue reading Mythologies- Barthes on… Wrestling