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Journal of the International Association for Semiotic Studies / Revue de l'Association Internationale de Sémiotique

Editor-in-Chief: Danesi, Marcel

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Agenzia Nazionale di Valutazione del Sistema Universitario e della Ricerca: Classe A

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Volume 2009, Issue 174


Double binds, triadic binds

Yair Neuman
Published Online: 2009-04-02 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/semi.2009.034


Bateson's theory of the double bind has been mistakenly interpreted as pertaining to a simple communication paradox. This article proposes a semiotic reformulation of the double bind as a manipulated breach in a concerted effort to create thirdness. This proposal is guided by an interdisciplinary perspective that investigates the double bind by drawing on parallel themes from relational psychoanalysis, semiotics, and Bakhtinian linguistics. The reformulation of the double bind is illustrated through the analysis of excerpts from literary works that exemplify how binds might close the potential space of intersubjectivity.

Keywords:: double bind; semiotics; language and psychoanalysis; potential space; intersubjectivity; Portnoy's complaint

About the article

Published Online: 2009-04-02

Published in Print: 2009-04-01

Citation Information: Semiotica, Volume 2009, Issue 174, Pages 227–240, ISSN (Online) 1613-3692, ISSN (Print) 0037-1998, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/semi.2009.034.

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