At the beginning, I had already confused about the meaning of ‘fringes’ because I am not familiar with Roman and I was thinking it might be has something to do with fashion. But then I read through the whole article, I found out that in the movie, Julius Caesar, everyone has hair on their foreheads and the director tried to use fringes to show how Roman the actors in this film are.

In the article, Barthes seems angry with these fringes in the film because I think he thinks that it is ludicrous to use physical characteristics to show what the soul, the meaning of people in a certain period. Although Barthes does not like the way the director did in the film, it seems fine to me because I am thinking maybe he was trying to make the film better and showing how real the actors in the film are by showing those physical characteristics of Roman. Unfortunately, he used the wrong way because in Barthes’s view, ‘Roman-ness’ is more than ‘fringes’, is more than something we can usually notice and obvious.

I really like the part that Barthes mentions about ‘sweating’. I think it is good to know that director used something physical to convey something mentally like emotions and feelings and I have never noticed that before. Films are different from novels that in some ways they cannot express one’s struggles in his/her mind. In addition, Barthes says ‘all the faces sweat constantly’ and ‘close-up are so frequent that evidently sweat here is an attribute with a purpose.’ . I can feel that he doesn’t like too many close ups for describing a sign and I think it is because it will destroy the atheistic sense of a film by making all the signs so noticeable and ‘openly intellectual’. Besides, people will not think deeply about what the film is trying to express – the spirit of Roman or how great the scenes look like.

I still confuse about idiosyncrasies and style because I think there are idiosyncrasies so that there is style. I even checked dictionary and recalled what Professor Ferguson said in the class in order to separate them. According to, ‘idiosyncrasy’ means a characteristic, habit, mannerism, or the like, that is peculiar to an individual and ‘style’ means a particular, distinctive, or characteristic mode of action or manner of acting: They do these things in a grand style. (They are abstract and the difference between them is so ambiguous! )

Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Comments are closed.

Spam prevention powered by Akismet

Skip to toolbar