English Literature

What is Structuralism? How is it helpful in grasping the appeal and intent of a literary text?

Answer: Structuralism can be defined as a conceptual and methodological approach to defining and analysing a range of objects of inquiry. These objects of inquiry includes cultures, economics, language, literature, mythology, politics, and societies, to name a few examples. The structuralist approach to prose literature offers a new and creative framework for analysing prose literature. Some of the outcomes of literary structuralism include the development of the fiction reader’s role, the use of storey as a tool to serve for language, and the use of storey not only to represent concrete reality but also to develop new, contextual, and pluralistic complexities in language spaces.

Early twentieth-century Russian formalists, like as Ferdinand de Saussure, helped to establish the foundations for structuralist theory in its contemporary application. Words in poetry, in the eyes of the formalists, did not only serve as signifiers, but also as signifieds, as they were also signifieds. As defined by formalists, literary works were considered to be functional systems, composed of devices whose value was decided by the worth of other devices that were played off against them. Furthermore, they considered literature to be a kind of language, with each particular work serving as an instance of parole. The structuralists of the 1960s and 1970s in France took these linguistic parallels a step further by applying them to other languages.

However, if “structuralism” can be used to describe both “structures” and their functioning, it may be traced all the way back to Plato and Aristotle. Because of the character of poetic mimicry, according to Plato, it was a servile and untruthful speech, both in terms of substance and in terms of structure, and as a result, it deserved to be expelled from his realm. His focus on the logical and ethical structure of poetry, on the other hand, is what is known as Aristotelian “structuralism.” In terms of the former, he thought that a poem should have a beginning, a middle, and an end that are logically linked to one another, resulting in an organic whole at the conclusion of the process. Specifically, when it comes to ethical form, the Greek rhetorician argued that the tragic hero should be a man whose demise is not the product of his vice or depravity, but rather the result of his mistake or weakness. In this respect, Horace may be regarded a structuralist as well as anybody else. Longinus was unconcerned with the formal aspects of poetry, and sublimity was just the echo of a vast spirit in his eyes.

The structuralism of Renaissance literature may have its origins in the organisation of a society that was highly class conscious, as evidenced, for example, by the tripartite dramatic poetry that dramatised the English hierarchical society, a society in which tragedy was reserved for the upper classes, comedy for the middle classes, and farce for the lower classes. And decorum, which was much required in writing at the time, meant that each genre should be suitable for the class of society that it reflected.

What is Structuralism? How is it helpful in grasping the appeal and intent of a literary text?

The Romantic poet-critics were outraged by the Neo-classical poetic “rules” and “decorum,” believing that they would artificialize the poetry and make it unnatural. If, on the other hand, one recognises the four prominent components that were at work in a poetic production of the Romantic period, one must acknowledge the presence of structuralist tendencies in the literature of that time period as well.

By the period of Hippolyte Taine, a French critic and historian, literary structuralism had already started to take hold in the minds of readers. Taine approached literature in a scientific way, similar to how a biologist examines his specimen.   He asserted that poetry alters tradition, but that the poet’s thinking stays unaltered in relation to that tradition. Eliot uses an example to help the reader understand the concept of depersonalization in poets’ work.

As a result, the term “early structuralism” used in the current article should be regarded as distinct from the term “mid-century structuralism.” The first refers to the sum total of all of the elements that go into the outward shape and structure of a literary work, but also the interests and curiosities of literature instructors and students. The structure of poetry, in this sense, was probably primarily an outward element of poetry instead of an interior feature of poetry. With regard to  structure, the problems of genre, metrical patterns, and rhyme scheme were handled individually.

With this development, form and structure in a piece of prose fiction were regarded to be the sum total of the work’s setting, action, narrative, and characterisation, among other elements. This type of structure was intimately linked to the outward form of a piece of verbal art, that would be viewed not as dynamic and creative, but rather as static and mechanical in its presentation. One of its functions was to provide a base for literary scholars to analyse a piece of work in order to develop theories about it, and another function was to serve as a threshold through which literary students might peer into the work via its many windows.

In the context of the social and linguistic crises, structuralism is best understood as both a symptom of and a response to that crisis. It diverts attention away from studying the socio-political consequences of language’s referential function and toward investigating the structure of language. According to Barthes, few actions could be more socio-politically important in the sense of expressing the crisis and demonstrating structuarlists’ incapacity to deal with it. However, this is an ironic gesture.

IGNOU MA English IGNOU MEG Solved Assignment English Literature

Although Structuralism is exclusively concerned with the language system and establishes a depth study of the common signs we use in our everyday lives, it is not a purely theoretical approach to keeping society and politics at bay. Instead, it is a practical approach to keeping society and politics at bay. It serves to draw our attention to their ability to change through time, as well as to attempt to understand the characteristics of the framework within which such changes occur.

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