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The American Journal of Semiotics

Volume 23, Issue 1/4, 2007

Semiotics in the Chinese Umwelt

Dennis C. H. Cheng
Pages 19-37

East Asian Semiotics
Graphic Interpretations of Body, Mind and the Universe

In East Asia, there has been a long tradition of using graphs and diagrams to express abstract ideas. This paper is to give an account of the East Asian methods for representing body, mind and the universe. The fundamental ideas of East Asian graphic interpretation mostly originated from the Yijing (I Ching, Zhouyi), and were later developed by Confucian and Daoist thinkers to describe the universe, the mind, and the body as an organic totality. By comparing different approaches to portraying the universe, this paper offers a critical analysis of East Asian semiotics.

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