Systems of Interpretation • 3

Re: Peirce ListMike BergmanValentine Daniel

The “triskelion” figure in the previous post shows the bare essentials of an elementary sign relation or individual triple (o, s, i).  There’s a less skeletal figure Susan Awbrey and I used in an earlier paper, where our aim was to articulate the commonalities Peirce’s concept of a sign relation shares with its archetype in Aristotle.

Sign Relation in Aristotle
\text{Figure 1. The Sign Relation in Aristotle}

Here is the corresponding passage from “On Interpretation”.

Words spoken are symbols or signs (symbola) of affections or impressions (pathemata) of the soul (psyche);  written words are the signs of words spoken.  As writing, so also is speech not the same for all races of men.  But the mental affections themselves, of which these words are primarily signs (semeia), are the same for the whole of mankind, as are also the objects (pragmata) of which those affections are representations or likenesses, images, copies (homoiomata).  (De Interp. i. 16a4).


  • Awbrey, J.L., and Awbrey, S.M. (1995), “Interpretation as Action : The Risk of Inquiry”, Inquiry : Critical Thinking Across the Disciplines 15(1), 40–52.  ArchiveJournal.  Online (doc) (pdf).
  • Awbrey, S.M., and Awbrey, J.L. (2001), “Conceptual Barriers to Creating Integrative Universities”, Organization : The Interdisciplinary Journal of Organization, Theory, and Society 8(2), Sage Publications, London, UK, 269–284.  AbstractOnline.
  • Awbrey, S.M., and Awbrey, J.L. (September 1999), “Organizations of Learning or Learning Organizations : The Challenge of Creating Integrative Universities for the Next Century”, Second International Conference of the Journal ‘Organization’, Re‑Organizing Knowledge, Trans‑Forming Institutions : Knowing, Knowledge, and the University in the 21st Century, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, MA.  Online.
This entry was posted in C.S. Peirce, Diagrammatic Reasoning, Interpretive Frameworks, Logic, Logical Graphs, Objective Frameworks, Relation Theory, Semiotics, Sign Relations, Systems of Interpretation, Triadic Relations, Visualization and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

1 Response to Systems of Interpretation • 3

  1. Pingback: Survey of Semiotics, Semiosis, Sign Relations • 4 | Inquiry Into Inquiry

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