Mythologies- Barthes on… Ornamental Cookery

Modern depictions of food are concerned more with artifice and ideology than with genuine potential as food to be eaten. Food in our magazines and on television isn’t ‘real’ food. This is what Barthes concerns himself with in Ornamental Cookery. He explains how food in contemporary culture as been given an artificial reality to repackage…… Continue reading Mythologies- Barthes on… Ornamental Cookery

How we reduce our lives to symbols and narratives

A picture is about what is included in it. There is an argument to be made that the meaning of a picture is also to be found in what is omitted from the frame, but what is included needs to be seen first in order to establish what is missing. In this way, the totality…… Continue reading How we reduce our lives to symbols and narratives

Mythologies- Barthes on… Steak and Chips

Steak has a profoundly powerful meaning behind it. Cutting into a perfect medium-rare steak, the sensational flow of juices, the rich smell, that wonderful charred outside and sanguine redness within, the anticipation of that first umami-rich bite, then the feeling of pure bliss as you bite into it. Steak has a flavour and taste like…… Continue reading Mythologies- Barthes on… Steak and Chips

A deeper understanding of the narrative form

The word ‘narrative’ comes from the Latin word ‘narrativus’, meaning ‘to tell a story’. That is exactly how we come to understand what a narrative is- a linear description of a series of events, usually with a standard beginning-middle-end form. However, what is worth considering is what the need for narrative says about the human…… Continue reading A deeper understanding of the narrative form

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