Johannes A Smit


Capitalising on the analytic semiology of Roland Barthes, a semiological theory is developed which may account for the peculiarities of a gospel narrative as a system of second order signification is enriched with the Bakhtinian conception that signification may in fact be closer specified with the notion of dialogism. The function of dialogism in the myth’s presentation of the time and space, is indicative of the information which is revealed to the implied to the reader. This article is devoted to the development of a theory which would make a semiological reading of the gospel narrative of Mark possible. Roland Barthes ‘essay’, Myth Today (1957]1973:117ff), provides the contours within which the semiological theory is developed and use. The article is divided into five parts. In the first four parts, I provide an overview of the semiological theory of Barthes and show how it may be developed to account for the peculiarities of a gospel narrative. In the fifth part I describe the nature and function of divine time and space in Mark. Divine time and space constitute the dominant matrix in the narrative discourse within which the intentional consciousness of both implied author and reader functions. In the final section, I supply a brief conclusion which provides basic theoretical guidelines for the reading of myth in terms of narrative theory.


Mythology; Barthes; Mark

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ISSN 2305-445X (online); ISSN 0254-1807 (print)

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