Autumn Term Seminars 2018
- 13/9. Jonathan Schlossberg (The University of Newcastle, Australia): Factors influencing diversity in spatial referencing practices: evidence from Marshallese.
- 20/9. Juan Carlos Mendoza Collazos (Doctorate student at Cognitive semiotics, Lund). Semiotics of design and the notion of agency: the pursuit of cognitive semiotics applications.
- Abstract: The semiotic analysis of artefacts has been a field of study of great interest not only in sociology, archaeology and anthropology, but also for design professions such as industrial design, graphic design and architecture. In this seminar, the notion of agency will be presented in order to introduce a new approach to semiotics of design. The capability of agency is often taken for granted as a property of artefacts. This consideration is phenomenologically misleading. From agentive semiotics (Niño, 2015) we develop the thesis that artefacts do not have agency, and therefore do not have the ability to act or interact with human beings. In addition, artefacts do not signify or communicate by themselves. Agentive semiotics is a new approach to signification strongly based on the notion of agency and it embedded into (and derived from) cognitive semiotics. Unlike traditional semiotic analysis of design, the agentive approach implies focus not on the artefacts themselves, but on acts of production and response between agents, i.e. between designers and users. The main goal of the present project is to close the conceptual-empirical loop of the agentive theory with applications of its theoretical corpus into design practice, showing how theoretical and “applied” cognitive semiotics can intermix.