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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 2015, Issue 207


Environmental communications: The reader’s perspective

Matthew Haigh
Published Online: 2015-07-17 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/sem-2015-0046


Connecting reception theory and social semiotics, this article offers a framework for the analysis of hortatory texts. An illustrative case uses the pronouncements of environmental regulators, with the reader group represented by a sample of executives in financial institutions. Although the participants thought the texts important, none had found any use for them. It is unlikely that financial institutions en masse will address environmental issues before and until communicators frame their material in terms of customary financial discourse and investors’ dominant cognitive rationalities. The depth of insights gained suggests wider application of the framework to a range of hortatory texts and authoritative reader groups.

Keywords: social semiotics; reception theory; financial institutions; environmental regulation; rationalities; frames


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About the article

Published Online: 2015-07-17

Published in Print: 2015-10-01

Citation Information: Semiotica, Volume 2015, Issue 207, Pages 233–250, ISSN (Online) 1613-3692, ISSN (Print) 0037-1998, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/sem-2015-0046.

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