Exploring Language, Literacy, and Cross-Cultural Representation: A Semiotic Analysis in Mistry’s Family Matters
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Type of Work14 pages
Citation of Original PublicationHarry Bhandar, Exploring Language, Literacy, and Cross-Cultural Representation: A Semiotic Analysis in Mistry’s Family Matters, JOGLTEP 6(2) pp. 1174-1187, http://jogltep.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/4-jogltep-Semiotic-Analysis-of-Cultural-Representation-in-Rohinton-Mistry.pdf
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In this paper, I explore the local cultural space and community engagement, and the meaning making process of everyday lives of fictional characters through the signs, or the objects. Using a case of Rohinton Mistry’s (2002) novel Family Matters, I look into the cultural representation and community engagement derived from cultural and material interpretation of various objects that highlight arbitrary nodes of signifier and signified-- the linguistic meaning making process. The family is a central semiotic construct of the novel; thus, all meaning derives from the patriarch of that family: Nariman, the main fictional character. This essay also analyzes the text through diachronic tour winding through how words, symbols, and contradictions open up new decoding of cultural variance. The phenomenon of collective strength, glorification of Persian culture, and decoders’ longing to their roots are aligned with people’s messages, context, code, and discourse. Amid the growing debate on media (film, television, still images, advertisement and other works of art), I intend to examine how the social production and structuration of meaning come into play in this novel.
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