Towards a Biosemiotic Model of National Literature: Samples from Singaporean Writers
Yap, Geok Hui
|Keywords:||生物符號學;國家文學;新加坡作家;Biosemiotics;National Literature;Singaporean Writers||Issue Date:||2005||Abstract:||null
Singapore has four official languages and they are Malay, Chinese, Tamil, and English with respect to each ethnic group. English is the working language and the other languages are considered mother tongues of each individual ethnic group. While examining the broad social, educational, political, cultural, and economic forces that shaped the writers’ destiny in order to provide background and contexts, this dissertation is concerned with how the notion of identity is constructed and maintained in the literary works. History, myth, and fable coalesce with sharp social commentary are evident in the literature after the attainment of nationhood.
By placing the writers and their literary works in the sociological context and using the methodology proposed in this dissertation, I will present in a systematic way how individual entity or unity interacts in Singaporean literature. Firstly, it is observed that two (sometimes more than two) entities/unities from the same domain, for example, language, culture, ethnicity, and so on, are selected by the author in his literature. The entities/unities exist in the first-order and interact based on the first-order structural coupling. The “medium” is the domain in which the entity comes from in the first-order. Secondly, it is observed that interactions generally do not stop at first-order. The first-order coupling is the initial state to start off a successive reaction. The second-order structural coupling then follows, in which the triggering or interfering entity acts upon the coupled structure. This triggering or interfering entity is labeled “environment” to indicate an external force triggering an internal response of the couple. The third-order coupling is the structural coupling of the unities with its medium. In this case, the social domain is where all entities are immersed. The complex web of relationships created by the superposition of political, economic, historical, and cultural relation in the social domain are reflected in the literary works to produce a distinctive Singaporean spectrum.
|Appears in Collections:||外國語文學系|
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