The Humanity Of Words - online book

A Primer Of Semantics

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138                  THE HUMANITY OF WORDS
we examine an editorial analytically and evaluatively, for the sake of the study of signs alone, we are in the area of descriptive semiotic.
Applied semiotic is the use of pure and descriptive semiotic in goal-seeking behavior. When a goal beckons as a possible means of satisfaction of a needwe would exert our every skill toward the attainment of that goal. And Morris puts the intelligent use of signs at the peak of the human potential by which to achieve personal and social goals.
In this Part, we shall be interested in Morris's work in so far as it is concerned (1) with the study of the four uses of signs and the corresponding four modes of signifying, and (2) with the actual use to which signs may be put In self-making and man-making. If, tomorrow, you will make use of Morris's science of signs as you sit in conference with others, as you write a letter, as you telephone a client, you will have advanced to the area of semiotic which Morris refers to as applied pragmatics.
Semiotic is defined as the science of signs.
A sign is a substitute for something else, and, as such, must be interpreted.
A signal is a substitute stimulus.
A symbol is a sign produced by an interpreter of a signal and acts as a substitute for that signal with which it is synonymous.
The three major divisions of semiotic are syntactics, semantics, and pragmatics.
The three divisions of each (and, hence, of semiotic as a whole) are pure, descriptive, and applied.
Here is a skeletal arrangement of Morris's basic terms which may help you to place them and to remember them;