Vom Reich der leeren Zeichen zum unendlichen Spiel mit den Zeichen
Yoko Tawadas postkolonialer Dialog mit Roland Barthes
Pages 453 - 469
This article compares Yoko Tawada’s book Talisman with Roland Barthes’ L’empire de signes. It shows that Tawada Talisman’s shares with Barthes’ text the semiotic and poststructuralistic view of language and culture, as well the decentrisation of the subject. However, the paper draws attention to the postcolonial perspective in Talisman, which turns Barthes’ narrator perspective upside down: Whereas L’émpire de signes is narrated by an European who writes about Japan, in Talisman we have Japanese female narrators decoding the European (German) language and culture. However, this postcolonial angle should not read as a negation of Barthes’ text, but rather as a dialogue with it, as well as a productive writing strategy used by a non-narrative author such as Yoko Tawada.