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1. Introduction to Media History LO.docx
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Department
Communication Studies
Course
CS100
Professor
Martin Morris
Semester
Fall

Description
CS 100B INTRODUCTION TO MEDIAHISTORY WINTER, 2014 Dr. Martin Morris,Associate Professor What is communication studies? o There are ‘administrative’ approaches and ‘critical’ approaches to communication studies —we do the latter o the social and historical constitution of communication technologies (that is, memorizing  dates is not really part of the study of media history) Introduction to ‘meaning-making’ o Above all, humans are meaning­makers o “We think only in signs” (C.S. Pierce) o Signs may take the forms of words, images, sounds, odours, flavours, acts or objects o “Nothing is a sign unless it is interpreted as a sign” o Three kinds of signs:  o likenesses, or icons o indications, or indices o symbols, or general signs o Cave paintings are among the earliest human signs recorded. Pictograms are different  from human language. Why? o Tokens: a painting of a horse is different from a token because there is no specific  relationship between a token and what it represents. The symbol contrasts with the icon. o Writing systems developed in Sumeria in 3200 BCE o Cuneiform indicates wedge shaped markings on clay and stone. Pictographic or  ideographic writing o phonetic symbols—major development o The Phonetic or “Rebus” principle 1 The ‘Golden Plaque’ attached to the Pioneer 10 spacecraft, 1972 2 3 Nota bene: “
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