In this blog post, I will discuss how motifs begin to materialize more significantly in a text as it proceeds. Tracing the development of motifs through a text can be difficult and time-consuming, often taking hours or even days to complete.
Many scholars consider it an act of diligence and patience that is focused on developing a better understanding of the implied meaning of a text; what is important and what language mostly serves as decoration.
Here are some points discussed about What Happens When Motif Gathers Larger Significance Throughout a Text-
1. Motifs are often repeated several times-
A motif is a recurring theme in any piece of literature. It may be a word or phrase, an object or cause, or something else.
It can appear as frequently as every third sentence, but it is much more common to find numerous occurrences of the same motif throughout the work.
2. Motifs develop over time.
In the beginning of a text, the reader knows very little about what is coming. This is often because the author introduces all his own meanings and does not allow readers to imagine anything for themselves.
As the text progresses and the themes are repeated, readers may begin to notice a greater significance behind motifs and begin to draw conclusions as to how these themes are intended to be read.
Through this process, motifs become more significant until they develop into something more identifiable.
3. Motifs are purposely ambiguous.
Motifs are significant because they reflect the thought processes of the author, but since they are not as obvious as symbolism, they often appear more mysterious and difficult to comprehend.
If a reader where to look at a text and see that everything was clear and evident, then it would seem rather boring.
Authors often purposefully use motifs in order to make the audience think critically about the text or narrative so that they can arrive at their own interpretations of the material.
4. Motifs help an author develop a theme (a subject or topic).
In order for a text to be expressive, it must have an underlying theme or topic that is representative of its message or purpose.
A motif is a way for an author to develop or express that theme. The more the motif is repeated, the more significance it becomes and the clearer its role in developing a theme.
5. Motifs can also be used to explain cause and effect relationships.
A motif may not only develop an idea but may also help readers understand how one action leads to another or how one thing causes another.
Developing such cause and effect relationships throughout a text enables readers to gain a better understanding of what a work is talking about and helps them retain the information they have read better than if it was all just stated plainly.
6. Motifs can establish an author’s tone (how he feels about something).
Oftentimes, motifs serve to emphasize the feelings of the author. They are a way for an author to express or condemn certain actions or ideas.
Readers can better understand what is “wrong” or “right” in the text if they know what is a motif that helps express these ideas and what does not, enabling them to figure out what an author meant to convey through his work.
7. Motifs can show how one thing becomes different.
Since motifs become more significant as the text proceeds, they can be a way for authors to show how something has changed from its former state. As the motif becomes more prevalent through repeated occurrences, it serves to show how something is different from what it once was.
8. Motifs can help establish a time period.
When motifs are introduced early on in a narrative, they often serve as a way for an author to give his audience an idea of when the text takes place. Imagery and descriptive references to popular figures or events may allow readers to establish the time period in which the story takes place.
This is especially helpful when the text is set in the past but also helps when a story takes place in a historical setting, as well.
9. Motifs can emphasize how two things are different.
A motif may not only show how something has changed but can also help readers understand how two different things are different. Oftentimes, motifs become significant enough to develop into plot points or themes of the writing but they do not change the meaning of an idea all by themselves- rather they serve to emphasize it and help readers develop their understanding of it.