Post-Structuralism & Structuralism

I like that the texts starts off right away by accusing post-structuralism to be a rebellious form of structuralism. The two differ in that structuralism deals with the way in which humans make interpretations, which makes it more abstract, and post structuralism “maintains that the consequences of this belief are that we enter a universe of radical uncertainty, since we can have no access to any fixed landmark which is beyond linguistic processing, and hence we have no certain standard by which to measure anything.” ( Peter Barry pg 61)

It almost seems as if both structuralism and post-structuralism need to coincide with each other, even though it may be hard to choose between the two. Structuralism is linked to scientific method, whereas post-structuralism states that “there are no facts, only interpretations.”(pg 63)  My question now is how do these two contradict common sense truths that humans already have developed over time? Or is there even such a thing as “truth”? For example, how might is contradict to the language? Language is arbitrary and is always open to change, yet there are still some things that can be read over time that have a specific meaning, or “truth” that may not be open to interpretation. How might these two work together in deconstructing a text? Do they both contribute to the text unraveling of the text?

I’m still quite on the fence between the two. I’m not really sure if I agree with one or the other. I just keeping thinking that post-structuralism is so adamant on the universe not having one set truth, but that sentence in itself is one set truth. It’s telling us there are many truths within language that is up to each person to find, but just the fact that it’s saying that so firmly and with no doubts is a very “structuralist” approach. I’m not sure why post-structuralism doesn’t want us to trust language. Humans have created language in order to communicate and build trust, so I’m not sure why we’re not supposed to trust signs, signifier and signified as a useful means of finding meaning.

Post Structuralism vs. Structuralism

Post structuralism and deconstruction deals with the differences between the two terms. In the essay there are 4 different key points that can show the reader the difference between post structuralism and structuralism. The certain key differences that I decided to write about were tone and style, attitude to language and, project. The essay points out the differences between the two terms in order to get a better understanding what the differences are and to compare the two theories to one another. structuralism writing is one that is seen as abstract and general. There is a form that structuralism takes on that has an order that takes on aspects of scientific writing although it does not want to be labeled as a term that is only scientific. Post-structuralism writing is euphoric and urgent. This means that the writing is supposed to give off a certain feeling or expression to the reader that is associated with happiness. Structuralist believe that the world is constructed through language. Reality is only seen through a linguistic medium. I find this interesting because I think that the structuralism is trying to state that language is very important in the sense that it creates the world we live in. Structuralism also is thought of as having a structure and order that the world revolves around. Post structuralist’s believe that reality is seen as textual. “post structuralism develops what threatens to become terminal anxieties about the possibility of achieving knowledge through language.” I think that this quote helps us understand how post structuralism causes certain tensions that are brought up by the idea of language. This idea is further explained to express the idea of words in language that mean one thing may not successfully be understood the way one refers to them. There is a lost in translation at times and meaning can vary according to the words that are used in language. Post structualists also believe that words are known and understood through the help of other words that are opposite of the original word that is trying to be identified. The goal that structuralism wants to fulfill is the breakaway from the modes of perception/categorization and get words to be seen in a more reliable point of view. Post structuralisms goals are for one to see an individual as a product of social and linguistic forms and to take away the idea of skepticism in language.