Volume 17, Issue 65 (2024)                   LCQ 2024, 17(65): 13-47 | Back to browse issues page

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Albughobaish A. Spectrality and Instability of the Meaning: A Deconstructive Analysis of a Persian Short Story by Abuturab Khosrawi. LCQ 2024; 17 (65) :13-47
URL: http://lcq.modares.ac.ir/article-29-72803-en.html
Associate Prof. in Dept. of Persian Lang. and Lit. at Allameh Tabataba’i Univ. , ghobeishi@atu.ac.ir
Abstract:   (862 Views)
As a different strategy for analyzing the texts, deconstruction violates and decentralizes their explicit meaning, bringing out the hidden meanings by finding the hidden contradictions in the texts. The application of such a strategy in the analysis of Persian texts can reveal special aspects of them and approach the intellectual structure of the authors. This paper revolves around deconstructing the short story “Hozour” (Presence) written by the contemporary Iranian writer Abuturab Khosrawi. Based on the study, there is a deconstructive relationship between presence and absence in the whole text. Despite the obvious title of the story, which is "Presence", the central idea is absence and marginalized matter in it reaches the level of presence. The instability in the corresponding relationship between the signifier and the signified and then the lack of meaning of the signifiers, the lack of initiation in the text, the reversal of the functions and positions of the signifiers in the text, and the lack of the names of the characters are considered as examples of decentralization from the centralized discourse of the text. In the light of this unstable relationship, the signifiers in the text have been disconnected from the final meaning, and thus, the meaning has been dispersed; one of the results of such situation is an aporia in accepting the definitive meaning of the text, so that the reader is no longer able to determine the final meaning. Displacement of presence and absence and the instability of meaning have cast a shadow even on the descriptions of the text and the locations of the characters and have violated the text from within.
Extended Abstract
Introduction
As a different strategy for analyzing the texts, deconstruction violates and decentralizes their explicit meaning, bringing out the hidden meanings by finding the hidden contradictions in the texts. The application of such a strategy in the analysis of Persian texts can reveal special aspects of them and approach the intellectual structure of the authors. This paper revolves around deconstructing the short story “Hozour” (Presence) written by the contemporary Iranian writer Abuturab Khosrawi. Based on the study, there is a deconstructive relationship between presence and absence in the whole text. Despite the obvious title of the story, which is "Presence", the central idea is absence and marginalized matter in it reaches the level of presence. The instability in the corresponding relationship between the signifier and the signified and then the lack of meaning of the signifiers, the lack of initiation in the text, the reversal of the functions and positions of the signifiers in the text, and the lack of the names of the characters are considered as examples of decentralization from the centralized discourse of the text. In the light of this unstable relationship, the signifiers in the text have been disconnected from the final meaning, and thus, the meaning has been dispersed; one of the results of such situation is an aporia in accepting the definitive meaning of the text, so that the reader is no longer able to determine the final meaning. Displacement of presence and absence and the instability of meaning have cast a shadow even on the descriptions of the text and the locations of the characters and have violated the text from within.
Findings and Conclusion
The short story "Hozour" (Presence) was analyzed constructively. The researcher questioned the supposed message of the text by noting the contradictions. As a result, it was concluded that the main theme of the story is not "presence" but "absence". This conclusion may change with further readings and interpretations by other researchers. The text clearly presents a duality, highlighting the ownership of the house by the husband and wife, and the absence of ownership by the old woman. Furthermore, it emphasizes the superiority of the husband and wife over the old woman regarding the house. However, the reader finds out through the deconstruction of the story that it is possible to destabilize such a duality due to the suppressed elements in the text. This issue is manifested both in the reversal of the indicative function of the title and in other examples that were discussed. The aforementioned analysis suggests that the title of the text does not convey a straightforward interpretation of "presence"; instead, it conceals an underlying connotation that the text attempted to conceal. In addition to the semantic instability and due to dissemination in the text, the difference and distance of the apparent meaning from the hidden meanings and due to aporia, instability has been formed in the functions, situations, techniques, devices and literary possibilities of the text. Despite asserting ownership of the house, the characters could not establish a relationship with their neighbors and friends, and at the same time, having the key as a tool to resolve the conflicts could not prove the truth of their claim. The constable also found an opposite function and deviated from the function that the husband and wife expected from him and decentered them. As a result, what was presented as the alleged conversation between husband and wife was neutralized and questioned by the same devices used. Other examples of this semantic displacement include the lack of character names, the contradictory meaning of lighting, and the marginalized but central position in the text. Through the constructive study of Persian literary texts, we can get other meanings that will be effective in understanding the remaining aspects of the texts. Moreover, such a strategy can also bring us closer to the deep intellectual structures of the authors.
 
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Article Type: Original Research | Subject: Literary theory
Received: 2023/12/6 | Accepted: 2024/05/15 | Published: 2024/04/29

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