The Quest for Meaning: A Guide to Semiotic Theory and Practice, Second Edition

By Marcel Danesi

© 2020

Dating back to antiquity, semiotics is both a "technique" and a "science" that aims to understand the nature of meaning. An academic discipline in its own right, semiotics uses signs, such as words and symbols, to think, communicate, reflect, transmit, and preserve knowledge.

Since the initial publication of The Quest for Meaning in 2007, the world has changed dramatically with the advent of online culture, new technologies, and new ways of making signs and symbols. Updated to reflect these many changes, the second edition includes a comprehensive chapter on the use of semiotics in the Internet age. Written in a student-friendly style, featuring examples from everyday life, the book explains what semiotics is all about and why it is so important for gaining insights into our elusive and mysterious human nature.

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Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 216 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.0in x 9.0in
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  • PUBLISHED SEP 2020
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The go-to introductory guide to semiotic theory and practice, this second edition features a new chapter on semiotics in the digital age and sheds light on how we grasp for meaning in the modern world.

The Quest for Meaning: A Guide to Semiotic Theory and Practice, Second Edition

By Marcel Danesi

© 2020

Dating back to antiquity, semiotics is both a "technique" and a "science" that aims to understand the nature of meaning. An academic discipline in its own right, semiotics uses signs, such as words and symbols, to think, communicate, reflect, transmit, and preserve knowledge.

Since the initial publication of The Quest for Meaning in 2007, the world has changed dramatically with the advent of online culture, new technologies, and new ways of making signs and symbols. Updated to reflect these many changes, the second edition includes a comprehensive chapter on the use of semiotics in the Internet age. Written in a student-friendly style, featuring examples from everyday life, the book explains what semiotics is all about and why it is so important for gaining insights into our elusive and mysterious human nature.

Continue Reading Read Less

Product Details

  • World Rights
  • Page Count: 216 pages
  • Dimensions: 6.0in x 0.0in x 9.0in
  • Reviews

    "The second edition of The Quest for Meaning is remarkably accessible without sacrificing the necessary challenge posed by questions of knowledge-making and meaning. The book establishes a sound and ample historical foundation that deftly navigates around rabbit holes."


    Peter Vandenberg, Department of Writing, Rhetoric, and Discourse, DePaul University

    "The role of semiotics in digital humanities is a major contribution to the second edition. The Quest for Meaning aptly implements semiotic theory and practice to areas of artificial intelligence, modeling structure, and digital text."


    Jelena Jovicic, Department of Languages and World Literatures, The University of British Columbia, Okanagan
  • Author Information

    Marcel Danesi is a professor in the Department of Anthropology at the University of Toronto.
  • Table of contents

    Preface

    1. What Is Semiotics?

    1.1 Introduction
    1.2 Historical Sketch
    1.3 The Science of Meaning
    1.4 Two Fundamental Models of the Sign
    1.5 The Current Practice of Semiotics
    1.6 Semiotics in the Global Village
    1.7 Further Reading

    2. Signs

    2.1 Introduction
    2.2 Defining the Sign
    2.3 Symptoms and Signals
    2.4 Icons
    2.5 Indexes
    2.6 Symbols
    2.7 Names
    2.8 Body, Mind, and Culture
    2.9 Further Reading

    3. Structure

    3.1 Introduction
    3.2 Paradigmatic and Syntagmatic Structure
    3.3 Associative Structure
    3.4 Structural Economy
    3.5 Post-Structuralism
    3.6 Modeling
    3.7 Further Reading

    4. Codes

    4.1 Introduction
    4.2 What Is a Code?
    4.3 Opposition and Markedness
    4.4 Types of Codes
    4.5 Codes and Perception
    4.6 Further Reading

    5. Texts

    5.1 Introduction
    5.2 What Is a Text?
    5.3 Narrative Texts
    5.4 Visual Texts
    5.5 Digital Texts
    5.7 Texts, Mind, and Culture
    5.8 Further Reading

    6. Representation

    6.1 Introduction
    6.2 What Is Representation?
    6.3 Representation and Myth
    6.4 Online Knowledge Representation
    6.5 Representation and Reality
    6.5 Further Reading

    7. Semiotics in the Internet Era

    7.1 Introduction
    7.2 The Simulacrum
    7.3 Memes
    7.4 Emojis
    7.5 The Global Brain
    7.6 Posthumanism
    7.7 Further Reading

    8. Applications

    8.1 Introduction
    8.2 Clothing
    8.3 Food
    8.4 Visual Rhetoric
    8.5 The Quest for Meaning
    8.6 Further Reading

    Glossary of Technical Terms
    Index

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