For Barthes, the literal and figurative readings and meanings work
together to give a text its multilingual nature.
Metaphor is a tool for rendering a text
more plural, since with more synonyms and 'forms of language,' the
text is multiplied in both quantity and meaning:
"The excess of metaphor... is a game
played by the discourse. The game, which is a regulated activity and
always subject to return, consists then not in piling up words for mere
verbal pleasure (logorrhea) but in multiplying one form of language... as
though in an attempt to exhaust the nonetheless infinite variety and
reinventiveness of synonyms, while repeating and varying the signifier,
so as to affirm the plural existence of the text, its return."