Media Readings: Barthes S/Z LXIV. THE VOICE OF THE READER. S/Z XI The Five Codes & XII The Weaving of Voices. Learn More About the Five Codes. About the Five Codes. “To interpret a text is not to give it a (more or less justified, more or less free) meaning but on the contrary to appreciate what plural constitutes it.”
(Barthes S/Z, 4) According to Barthes, there is always more than one way to read a text. Five Codes of Roland Barthes. Roland Barthes and the Coding of Discourse The Codes Roland Barthes’s S/Z, which purports to be an exhaustive structuralist reading of Balzac’s Short story “Sarrasine,” in fact is a classic of what today we understand by post-structuralism, in its relentless exposure of the structuration of the structures of the realist narrative.
The following is an outline of the so called “five codes” he uses to analyse the different dimensions of realism (the five codes may be in analogy with the five senses through which the world comes naturally to our perception thus mocking the naturalist pretensions of the highly structured realist narrative). Further discussion of Barthes, if you are interested, is welcome. Any discussion of codes in discourse could justify a reference point in Jakobson’s Communication Model. Notes on Barthes SZ. Introduction to Roland Barthes, Module on the Five Codes.