Monday, June 05, 2006

Some Semiotics

Views on Literature

Viktor Shklovsky: The devices of art have the central function of "making strange," causing a renewal of perception against the background of the process of automation in which we become used to everyday actions and perceptions.

Yuri Tynyanov – “Theory of Literary Evolution” – Literature is a system whose devices tend to become automated…as a consequence new innovative devices are introduced within the system to guarantee its literariness.


Andrew Gabriel Rose said...

"as a consequence new innovative devices are introduced within the system"

But how often are these innovative devices derided as foolish, or pretentious?

Remember House of Leaves?

B. Kriplur said...

From the perspective of history, the idea of the novel is still relatively new, so maybe the timeline is stretched out a bit. Also, I don’t think literary invention is restricted to form alone. You could interpret “device” to mean not only the physical way in which the story is told (i.e., House of Leaves type literary invention), but also literary invention on a smaller scale such as coming up with a new metaphor. I would probably define an “innovative device” as one that “makes strange.” As clichéd as noir is, it is still possible to make strange, (see generally Kung Fu hustle and Dark City). At the same time it is possible to use a post modern writing technique but not really introduce anything new.

B. Kriplur said...

I really like these quotes I found, but the problem I have with them is that there are movies and stories I enjoy that don’t really introduce anything new, they just kind of reaffirm something already there - for instance I can enjoy very classic noir, or even cheesy metal. Part of the reason I like it is that the artist is staying true to a form that I like. But apart from that concern, I think I have stumbled on something really cool.