Welcome the smart book

Today’s utopia is tomorrow’s technology. One may dream of a kind of scientific books which would be strikingly different from the bound sets of printed pages which clutter our libraries and offer more rhetoric than […]

I ♥ Face Book

“Waste of time”, “intrusive”, “vain”, these are the words I hear from colleagues who swear they will never succumb to the Face Book craze. I beg to differ. It is true that endless successions of […]

Semiotics in Big Data Time

Notwithstanding the utopians from Arisbe to Tartu, life is a semiotic war zone. Broadcasting vital biological information “to whom it may concern” or selectively targeting the recipient(s) of socially relevant messages are adaptive moves which […]

Seriously semiotic pragmatics in practice

The development of linguistic pragmatics from the 1960’s onwards may be interpreted, in a way, as a ‘glottocentric’ move away from its parental home, the science of signs or semiotics. In principle, a focus on […]

Occupy Semiotics

The production of knowledge should not be confused with the production of discourse. Contemporary semiotics unfortunately tends to be a set of text-producing algorithms which run on their own steam like mad machines with little concern for empirical constraints.

Today’s students of semiotics are confronted by a grand multi-stream narrative which articulates a catalogue of categories which portends to describe the whole of natural and cultural processes. These axiomatic propositions are marketed as a doctrine grounded on self-evident epistemological truths which are irrefutable, that is, unfalsifiable. Like any set of very general categories it is bound to apply to a vast sample of objects. But does it explain anything? Does it allow us to predict and to control the phenomena which initially prompted this early quest for fundamental knowledge? […]

Semiotics and Society

As the discipline which studies signs and communication, semiotics is mainly concerned with social behavior. However, the models and theories which have been proposed so far generally remain at a high level of abstraction and […]

A Michael (M.A.K.) Halliday Special

This issue of SemiotiX, the first to which I am contributing in my capacity as Associate Editor, focuses on the contribution to semiotics by the Australian linguistic M.A.K.  Halliday.   Three guest scholars provide tasters of […]

The Senses of Space

Space has more than three dimensions. Our sense of space is generated by movement, that is, by time. But space is foremost a multimodal experience: visual, tactile, auditory, olfactory, and gustative. There is also an […]

Editorial: Brain Alight

Contemporary semiotics is rich in various models and methods which have clustered over the years to form hybrid descriptive tools. Most approaches are unashamedly eclectic and researchers usually engage in heuristics rather than in some […]


Can signs be toxic? Can there be killer signs, either because of their inherent properties or because of their sheer number?   Notwithstanding the claims of the modern avatars of Doctor Angelicus and Doctor Pangloss, signs […]

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