Signs, Communication Systems, and the Preparation, Legitimization, and Commemoration of Collective Mass Violence
Author: Frank Jacob
Wars create their own dynamics, especially with regard to images and language. The semiotic and semantic codes are redefined, according to the need to create an enemy image, or in reference to the results of a war that are post-event defined as just or reasonable. The semiotic systems of wars are central to the discussion of the contributions within this volume, which highlight the interrelationship of semiotic systems and their constructions during wars in different periods of history.
" . . . the greatest contribution to [semiotics] since the pioneering work of C. S. Peirce and Charles Morris." --Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism " . . . draws on philosophy, linguistics, sociology, anthropology and aesthetics and refers to a wide range of scholarship . . . raises many fascinating questions." --Language in Society " . . . a major contribution to the field of semiotic studies." --Robert Scholes, Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism " . . . the most significant text on the subject published in the English language that I know of." --Arthur Asa Berger, Journal of Communication Eco's treatment demonstrates his mastery of the field of semiotics. It focuses on the twin problems of the doctrine of signs--communication and signification--and offers a highly original theory of sign production, including a carefully wrought typology of signs and modes of production.
According to the author, psychoanalytic theory and practice – which discloses ‘the interminable falsity of the human subject’s belief in the mastery of its own mental life’ – is in part responsible for the coming of the postmodern era. In this title, originally published in 1993, Barratt examines the role of psychoanalysis in what he sees as the crisis of modernism, shows why the modernist position – what he calls the ‘modern episteme’ – is failing, and proposes that psychoanalysis should redefine itself as a postmodern method. In Barratt’s innovative account of psychoanalysis, which focuses on the significance of the free-associative process, Freud’s discovery of the repressed unconscious leads to a claim that is basic to postmodern ideas: ‘that all thinking and speaking, the production and reproduction of psychic reality, is inherently dynamic, polysemous, and contradictorious .’ He argues that subsequent attempts to ‘normalize and systematize’ psychoanalysis are reactionary and antipsychoanalytic efforts to salvage the modern episteme that psychoanalysis itself calls into question.
The Philosophy of Julia Kristeva is the latest addition to the highly acclaimed series, The Library of Living Philosophers. The book epitomizes the objectives of this acclaimed series; it contains critical interpretation of one of the greatest philosophers of our time, and pursues more creative regional and world dialogue on philosophical questions. The format provides a detailed interaction between those who interpret and critique Kristeva’s work and the seminal thinker herself, giving broad coverage, from diverse viewpoints, of all the major topics establishing her reputation. With questions directed to the philosopher while they are alive, the volumes in The Library of Living Philosophers have come to occupy a uniquely significant place in the realm of philosophy. The inclusion of Julia Kristeva constitutes a vital addition to an already robust list of thinkers. The Philosophy of Julia Kristeva exemplifies world-class intellectual work closely connected to the public sphere. Kristeva has been said to have “inherited the intellectual throne left vacant by Simone de Beauvoir,” and has won many awards, including the Hannah Arendt Prize for Political Thought. Julia Kristeva’s autobiography provides an excellent introduction to her work, situating it in relation to major political, intellectual, and cultural movements of the time. Her upbringing in Soviet-dominated Bulgaria, her move to the French intellectual landscape of the 1960s, her visit to Mao’s China, her response to the fall of the Berlin Wall, her participation in a papal summit on humanism, her appointment by President Chirac as President of the National Council on Disability, and her setting up of the Simone de Beauvoir prize, honoring women in active and creative fields, are all major moments of this fascinating life. The major part of the book is comprised of thirty-six essays by Kristeva’s foremost interpreters and critics, together with her replies to the essays. These encounters cover an exceptionally wide range of theoretical and literary writing. The strong international and multidisciplinary focus includes authors from over ten countries, and spans the fields of philosophy, semiotics, literature, psychoanalysis, feminist thought, political theory, art, and religion. The comprehensive bibliography provides further access to Kristeva’s writings and thought. The preparation of this volume, the thirty-sixth in the series, was supported by a major grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities.
"This book will be of critical importance not only to those concerned with African, African American, and Caribbean art, but also to anthropologists, scholars of the African diaspora, students of comparative religion and comparative psychology, and anyone fascinated by the traditions of vodou and vodun."--Jacket.
Twelve scholars from the fields of English, French, and German literature here examine the complex ways in which the human body becomes the privileged semiotic model through which eighteenth-century culture defines its political and conceptual centers. In making clear that the deployment of the body varies tremendously depending on what is meant by the 'human body', the essays draw on popular literature, poetics and aesthetics, garden architecture, physiognomy, beauty manuals, pornography and philosophy, as well as on canonical works in the genres of the novel and the drama.