The first paradox is the overwhelming focus in the 1978–9 classes on the haiku, which has exemplary status as a “Notation of the Present”: its extreme brevity enables it to approximate most closely and truthfully to the “instant” that, for Barthes, writing seeks to capture. But the haiku’s instantaneity is also a limit. With no room either for narrative or, especially, for the “interweaving” together of truth and falsehood in fiction, it throws the novel into relief.
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
At the TLS, Mairéad Hanrahan on Columbia University Press's new edition of Roland Barthes' notes-cum-teaching script The Preparation of the Novel (mmmm, I have to get this one and read it):