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The American Journal of Semiotics

Volume 20, Issue 1/4, 2004

Susan Petrilli
Pages 193-210
DOI: 10.5840/ajs2004201/45

Crossing Out Boundaries with Global Communication
The Problem of the Subject

The problem of the subject in global communication is that of persisting as a subject and maintaining identity. A biosemiotic perspective as developed by T. A. Sebeok can contribute to correctly thematizing the subject in a globalized world. Globalization today evidences the status of the subject as an embodied subject, a body structured in the intercorporeal relation with other bodies, interconnected with other bodies. We believe that ‘global semiotics’ developed in the direction of what we have called ‘semioethics’ is the discipline that can best provide us with the instruments necessary for an adequate understanding of global communication today and of the subject that inhabits it. Semioethics points to the need of recovering the relation between signs and values and ultimately the human dimension of semiosis if life, human and nonhuman, is to flourish over the entire planet.

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