- How meaning is built into what we see
- Nike Commercial:
o What are we accepting? Are we critical viewers or just passive viewers?
o Selling a lifestyle not a product
- What is Semiotics
o Is a study of signs (gestures, objects, images, words etc.?)
o Umberto Eco:
o Daniel Chamber : we as human beings are driven to attach meaning to what we
Ex: the podium. We expect the person with the most knowledge stand
behind the wooden podium.
• This means that we attach meaning into a podium. A signifier of
knowledge, authority etc.
Everything, our gestures, words what we see and hear, we tend to want
to bring meaning and understanding that is relevant to us.
o Signs have no intrinsic meaning on their own. They only have meaning because
we have invested meaning into them.
o TWO MODELS
FERDINANDE DE SAUSSURE :
• 2 part model:
o Sign is composed of the signifier (form that the sign takes)
o Signified is the concept we get from the signifier.
• Ex: Come to a store. It says OPEN = you go in and in your mind
you know that it is open for business. That is the signified that you
o Shopper: person reading the sign and making meaning
• The sign on its own is hard to understand what it means. For
example, we know what the podium means in relation to the context. The fact that the podium is in a university setting helps us
understand the value of the sign.
• There is no intrinsic direct or inevitable relation between the
signified and the signifier.
• The signifier is arbitrary that is agreed to by convention.
o Ex: how do we know what to do when we get to an
intersection when the light is red, we will stop. Agreed to by