Linguistic and non-linguistic signs (language and words are a type of sign) Study of language: linguistics (study of the character of language) Semiotics in the study of: 1) language (linguistics) Ferdinand de saussure: - signifier (the physical material sign itself) signified (the meaning of the sign/what the sign stands for) Together in his theory the signifier + signfied = the sign. *on ordinary language the signifier itself is the sign but in semiotics both the signifier and the signified make up the sign. Three kinds of signs: symbol: arbitrary; the sign has nothing to do with the subject (eg. barber pole sign really has nothing to do with a barber shop or cutting hair), it is simply a conventional relationship. Connected only via the system of significations (eg. language) The referent is what it represents but does not look or sound the same as the referent. Do not share any of their form with the referent.