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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 2019, Issue 227


The urgency of engaging with oddities and ambiguities: Reciprocity and cooperation visited as semio-aesthetic notions in bridging nature and culture

Jui-Pi Chien
  • Corresponding author
  • Foreign Languages and Literatures, National Taiwan University, No. 1, Sec. 4, Roosevelt Rd., Taipei, Taiwan
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Published Online: 2019-02-13 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/sem-2017-0159


The notion of the third culture forms the background of the study that seeks to unify humanistic and scientific approaches for a better appreciation of nature, culture, and the arts. This study draws on the kind of emotion and attitude that we may intuit and act out soon after noticing another individual demanding our help in nature and culture. Such feelings as sympathy and empathy, uncertainty and ambiguity, are perceived to be extremely useful in the context of strategy formation and action taking. These preverbal traits that are already more or less encoded in our body and mind may enable us to devise rewarding strategies emerging from the deep inside when we are coping with strange oddities in nature and culture. Such operation is seen on the one hand to save our biologically valuable time in terms of thinking and imagining, and on the other, to achieve brilliant interpretations of various art and life forms. This study reveals that we are estimated to come up with: (1) cogent and digestible propositions; (2) sharpened perceptions and refined tastes; (3) widened horizons of emulating and appreciating types of art and artifice. On top of polishing our own skills and swiftness of inventing strategies, we may also expect to forge encouraging and endearing partnerships between diverse life forms and us. All in all, this study develops the semio-aesthetic idea that we serve the community by way of developing balanced and intriguing viewpoints that may inspire individuals to regain linkages with beings and forms appearing unpleasant or unconvincing at first sight.

Keywords: the third culture; oddities and ambiguities; reciprocity and cooperation; sympathy and empathy; strategies and partnerships; propositions and intelligibility


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About the article

Published Online: 2019-02-13

Published in Print: 2019-03-05

Citation Information: Semiotica, Volume 2019, Issue 227, Pages 227–243, ISSN (Online) 1613-3692, DOI: https://doi.org/10.1515/sem-2017-0159.

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