Multimodal social semiotic and other semiotic approaches to designed material artefacts – similarities, differences and possibilities

Bidragets oversatte titel: Multimodal social semiotik og andre semiotiske tilgange til designede materielle ting - ligheder, forskelle og muligheder

Publikation: Konferencebidrag uden forlag/tidsskriftKonferenceabstrakt til konferenceForskningpeer review


Since the turn of the millennia the intricate question of the semiotics of designed material artefacts has been dealt with within a number of different academic disciplines like Design Studies (Matozzi, Proni), Material Culture Studies (Dant, Kean, Knappett), studies in marketing and branding (Batey, Danesi, Heilbrunn) and latest but not least also within multimodal social semiotics (Björkvall, Björkvall & Karlsson, Wagner). Although these different approaches all pursue the same objective; a more specific and precise theoretical understanding of the semiotics of things – the mutual awareness and exchange is remarkedly low. In this paper the above mentioned different approaches will be brought together and mapped in relation to each other. This will be done with special regard to propound a placement and characterization of multimodal social semiotics of artefacts within an overall semiotics of things. A key finding of the comparison of multimodal social semiotics in relation to the other semiotics treatments of artefactual meaning making is that the former maintain a very open approach to the semiotic resources which could be prompted by things. However other disciplines tend to assert more or less restricted or all-embracing typologies to chart and arrange commonplace semiotic resources usually occurring in symbolic and material interaction with things. The case will be made that multimodal social semiotics of artefacts could benefit theoretically by including such typologies in analysis without losing the flexibility and sensitiveness towards actual meaning making processes. Literature Batey, M. (2008). Brand Meaning. Abingdon: Routledge. Björkvall, A. (2009). “Practical function and meaning: A case study of IKEA tables”. In The Routledge Handbook of Multimodal Analysis (2nd ed.), 342–353. Björkvall, A., & Karlsson, A.-M. (2011). “The materiality of discourses and the semiotics of materials: A social perspective on the meaning potentials of written texts and furniture”. Semiotica, 187, 141-165. Danesi, M. (2006). Brands. Abingdon: Routledge. Danesi, M. (2013). “Semiotizing a product into a brand”. Social Semiotics, 23(4), 464–476. Dant, T. (2008). ”The ’Pragmatics’ of Material Interaction”, Journal of Consumer Culture, 8(1), 11-33. Heilbrunn, B. (2015). Market Mediations. London: Palgrave Macmillan UK. Keane, W. (2003). “Semiotics and the social analysis of material things”. Language & Communication, 23(3–4), 409–425. Knappett, C. (2005). Thinking through material culture: an interdisciplinary perspective. Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press. Mattozzi, A. (2009). “A model for the Semiotic Analysis of Objects”. S. Vihma & T.-M. Karjalainen (Eds.), Design Semiotics in Use. 41-64. Helsinki: University of Art and Design Press. Proni, G. (2002). “Outlines for a Semiotic Analysis of Objects”. Versus–Quaderni Di Studi Semiotici, 91(92), 37–59. Wagner, K. (2015) “Reading packages: social semiotics on the shelf”, Visual Communication, 14(2), 193-220.
Bidragets oversatte titelMultimodal social semiotik og andre semiotiske tilgange til designede materielle ting - ligheder, forskelle og muligheder
StatusUdgivet - 2018
Begivenhed9th International Conference on Multimodality: Multimodality - Moving Theory Forward - Syddansk Universitet, Odense, Danmark
Varighed: 15. aug. 201817. aug. 2018
Konferencens nummer: 9


Konference9th International Conference on Multimodality
LokationSyddansk Universitet