Essay on Semiotics and Signs

Submitted By Cakegirl1
Words: 1762
Pages: 8


What are the fundamental tenets of semiotic theory, and what is its

significance for twentieth century and/or contemporary art? Summarize its

basic precepts and implications, and critically evaluate its strengths and

weaknesses for interpreting at least one twentieth century artist or artistic



Semiotics, a well established discipline of signs and their use in human and

computer communications, is increasingly recognized as important to

understanding information systems and computing in general. This important new

resource examines a set of semiotic methods for information systems

development. Kecheng Liu offers well balanced coverage of recent theoretical

investigations and practical applications. He introduces the MEASUR approach

for requirements elicitation, analysis, and representation and illustrates the

methods in three major case studies. In these cases he demonstrates how

information systems can be developed to meet business requirements and to

support business objectives.

Semiotics actually did not start off with Pragmatism nor did it start off with Saussare. Semiotics is traced back to logic and metaphysics

mainly proposed by John Poinsot.

semiotics - an obfuscation of the relationship between word and object.

semiotics is important for understanding a process through which we derive meaning- most importantly, that meaning is negotiated- and

this has specific implications for the use of power and control through


Greek sēmeiōtikos observant of signs, from sēmeiousthai to interpret signs,

from sēmeion sign, from sēma sign

Study of signs and sign-using behaviour, especially in language. In the late

19th and early 20th century the work of Ferdinand de Saussure and Charles

Sanders Peirce led to the emergence of semiotics as a method for examining

phenomena in different fields, including aesthetics, anthropology,

communications, psychology, and semantics. Interest in the structure behind

the use of particular signs links semiotics with the methods of structuralism.

Saussure's theories are also fundamental to poststructuralism.

Core Assumptions and Statements

Semiotics is the theory of the production and interpretation of meaning. It's

basic principle is that meaning is made by the deployment of acts and objects

which function as "signs" in relation to other signs. Systems of signs are

constituted by the complex meaning-relations that can exist between one sign

and another, primarily relations of contrast and superordination/subordination

(e.g. class/member, whole/part). Signs are deployed in space and time to

produce "texts", whose meanings are construed by the mutually contextualizing

relations among their signs.

There are two major traditions in European semiotics: F. de Saussure,

semiology; and C.S. Peirce, semiotics. Saussure's approach was a

generalization of formal, structuralist linguistics; Peirce's was an extension

of reasoning and logic in the natural sciences.

General Semiotics tends to be formalistic, abstracting signs from the contexts

of use; Social Semiotics takes the meaning-making process, "semiosis", to be

more fundamental than the system of meaning-relations among signs, which are

considered only the resources to be deployed in making meaning.

Multimedia semiotics is based on the principle that all meaning-making,

because it is a material process as well as a semiotic practice, necessarily

overflows the analytical boundaries between distinct, idealized semiotic

resource systems such as language, gesture, depiction, action, etc. Every