Zero sign duality in visual semiotics

and Robert M. Cantor

Abstract

In this paper, the dyadic concept of zero sign in general linguistics is transformed into a triadic concept of zero sign in visual semiotics. A formal duality relation is defined between two types of visual zero sign. It is argued that the common experience of failure to perceive visual zero signs may be due to either inattention of the interpreter or camouflage of the object of the sign. We conclude that dual zero signs act as detectors in visual semiotics.

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The official journal of the International Association for Semiotic Studies, founded in 1969 as one of the first scholarly journals in the field, Semiotica features articles reporting results of research in all branches of semiotic studies, in-depth reviews of selected current literature in the field, and occasional guest editorials and reports. The journal also publishes occasional Special Issues devoted to topics of particular interest.

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