Monday, October 26, 2015

666th Season: Semiotics of Death

Semiosalong is kicking off its sixth season. And as it is the Devil's number, the theme for this season is Semiotics of Death, curated by Tyler James Bennet from Tartu University.

The first seminar, titled Necrosemiotic Axiology and "All Souls Night", will be held by the curator himself this Thursday, October 29th 6 pm. The series takes place in Tartu at Arhiiv (Vanemuise 19, entry from courtyard) our gathering place from last year. All of the seminars will be held in English in order to introduce the international semiotics students to the Semiosalong tradition and create a multi-language discussion on occurring matters.

Semiosis is a key identifying feature of life. Wherever we find life, we find the creative negotiation of contradiction, the experience of meaning. But semiotics itself is not strictly interested in semiosis. It is also interested in mono semic, predictable systems found outside of biology. The borderland between the semiosic and the non semiosic is a liminal space peopled by fuzzy hybrids of great interest. What resides beyond is mere death. If semiosis defines life, it also puts in relief that which is beyond. There are two dimensions to the semiotics of death. In the first place, its interest is in those pseudo sign structures whose plurality has perished. How do signs cross this meaningful threshold, where translation ends and copying begins? How can such late structures be preserved, or even resurrected? In the second place, the semiotic study of more literal instances of death, by their untimely reminder of personal mortality, can illuminate the reality of the sub symbolic realm. The semiotics of death breathes life back into the recumbent subject.

Poster design by Mehmet Emir Uslu

Next seminars:

Nov 12: Luke Cui. The Traveler and the Void: Time, Death, Immortality

Nov 26: Francesco Orsi. Sex, Death and Perversion

Dec 10: Ott Puumeister. Surviving Finitude: Survival returns into itself