Images, diagrams, and metaphors: hypoicons in the context of Peirce's sixty-six-fold classification of signs

Semiotica 2006 (162):287-307 (2006)
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In his 1903 Syllabus, Charles S. Peirce makes a distinction between icons and iconic signs, or hypoicons, and briefly introduces a division of the latter into images, diagrams, and metaphors. Peirce scholars have tried to make better sense of those concepts by understanding iconic signs in the context of the ten classes of signs described in the same Syllabus. We will argue, however, that the three kinds of hypoicons can better be understood in the context of Peirce's sixty-six classes of signs. We analyze examples of hypoicons taken from the field of information design, describing them in the framework of the sixty-six classes, and discuss the consequences of those descriptions to the debate about the order of determination of the 10 trichotomies that form those classes.

Author Profiles

Priscila Farias
Universidade de São Paulo
Joao Queiroz
Universidade Federal de Juiz de Fora


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