Roland Barthes, Le Degré zéro de l'écriture [Writing Degree Zero]

Graham Allen (University College Cork)
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Writing Degree Zero

is the first of the many books written by the French theorist Roland Barthes. Published in 1953 as

Le Degré zéro de l'écriture

(Paris: Le Seuil), this is a book which, as Susan Sontag states in her introduction to the English translation, can seem rather surprising to readers aware of Barthes's subsequent work (Barthes,

Writing Degree Zero

, translated by Annette Lavers and Colin Smith, New York: Hill and Wang, 1968: vii-viii). The book was written before Barthes's involvement with structuralism, semiology and, obviously, before post-structuralism began to radically influence his writing. In the place of these more familiar influences, readers of

Writing Degree Zero

encounter a text in which Barthes engages with the dominant intellectual trends of the day, notably…

2480 words

Citation: Allen, Graham. "Le Degré zéro de l'écriture". The Literary Encyclopedia. First published 20 September 2002 [, accessed 15 June 2024.]

10337 Le Degré zéro de l'écriture 3 Historical context notes are intended to give basic and preliminary information on a topic. In some cases they will be expanded into longer entries as the Literary Encyclopedia evolves.

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