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The American Journal of Semiotics

Volume 18, Issue 1/4, 2002

Ibrahim Taha
Pages 107-126

Heroism In Literature
A Semiotic Model

The semiotic model that disregards the normative context represented by the protagonist examines how we can distinguish the three conceptions of heroism, namely hero, semi-hero, and anti-hero. What are the methodological criteria whereby we can follow the protagonist in the text from beginning to end? To answer them, this article tries to present a model made up of five stages/criteria which constitute a semiotic model by means of which the connection to heroism can be determined. These are: (1) motivation, (2) will, (3) ability, (4) execution, and (5) outcome. These stages can be logically classified into three categories: 1) Pre-action (the first three stages), 2) Action (the fourth stage), 3) Post-action (the fifth stage). The model proposed here suits all types of narrative and drama and all performance and film production arts.

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