Dissertation > Literature > Literary Theory > Literary criticism,literature appreciation

The Theory of the Author on De-subjectivity in the Contemporary Age

Author AiZeZi·KaiLi
Tutor XuLiang
School Zhejiang University
Course Literature and Art
Keywords Roland Barthes Michel Foucault The theory of the author Text Structuralism Discourse theory De-subjectivity
Type Master's thesis
Year 2013
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As we can see, the concept of author has always been a significant aspect in literary theory. Plato defined the author as only the interpreter of the Gods,who establishes their "subjective". Until the " linguistic turn" which happened at the beginning of last century, we started to deconstruct and dispel the author. Roland Barthes and Michel Foucault play the most important role in this realm, and what they focus on widely differ from the traditional concept of the author.Roland Barthes as he carries his assumption of "The Death of The Author", leads the author with theological meaning to the ground. As he mentioned, the text which attract people to write is creativity, so the significance of literature is not to represent the rational meaning but for expressing the multiple existence of the text.For Michel Foucault, we must locate to the space left empty by the author’s disappearance, as he said "author is a function of the discourse." He argue that though the "author function" still plays a significant role in the terms of the discourse, what is crucial is the discourse tragedy behind the author rather than the function.In the process of exploring the significance of literature, Roland Barthes and Michel Foucault initiate Poetic and Political separately, which are quite different. Roland Barthes argues that how the meaning of the text affect, whereas Michel Foucault concerns with the consequence.By comparing and analysing the two theories-Poetic and Political-presented by the authors, this paper aims at drawing distinctions between them and indicating how they complement in the contemporary era. And another things advanced are the impact and innovation toward the traditional theory.

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