Subject Re: structuralism and semiotics
Posted by lily
Posted on Sat Jun 10 09:07:29 2000
From IP  
In Reply to structuralism and semiotics

After reading your journal , there are two interesting points I feel like discussing. The first one is that basically I agree with your idea that the binary opposition---concealment V.S. unconcealment is very much related to another binary opposition---power V.S. powerless so that it is better to analyze them together. However, before reading your journal, I always think that the relation between the two binary oppositions are just very simple---that concealment is equaled with power, and unconcealment is equaled with powerless. In other words, once a character*s position belongs to concealment, he becomes powerful, and if his position turns to unconcealment, he becomes powerless. Just that simple! However, in your journal, you mentioned another point of view. You said that, for example, when Prefect V.S. minister D, Perfect belongs to unconcealment (because all his actions are known by D) and becomes powerless (I perfectly agree with this). But at the same time, you also said that because Perfect wants to hide himself from minister D, he can also belong to concealment but still is powerless. And this kind of point of view is what I never think of before. I think I understand what you mean. You mean that from a reader*s point of view (to see the whole story) or from D*s point of view, we will consider Perfect belongs to unconcealment when he V.S. D, because we know that all his actions are known by D. However, if it is from Perfect himself*s point of view, he didn*t know that his actions are known by D and would naturally think that he himself belongs to concealment and D belongs to unconcealment. It is really a very interesting point! It reminds me that there are really many different ways to interpret a text. I should not oversimplify it; instead, I shall try to think of a text from more different points of view.
Another interesting point I would like to discuss is the binary opposition---stupidity V.S. smartness. I think it is interesting to use the two words "stupidity" and "smartness." However, I don*t think it is fair to use the two words to explain the relations between the characters. For example, in the relation between the queen and minister D, though D got the queen*s letter and became powerful, it doesn*t mean that D is smarter than the queen, for if he has not got such a good luck to find out the letter which the queen wants to hide, he would not be able to steal it and get the power. So it is not just his I Q but also other factors to result in his being more powerful than the queen. It is not fair to say that the queen is stupid and D is smart. I would rather say that the queen is more unlucky and D is more lucky at that moment. What do you think of?

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