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Sign Systems Studies

Volume 42, Issue 4, 2014

Anton Markoš
Pages 487-498

Biosphere as semiosphere: Variations on Lotman

The analogy between semiosphere (world of cultures) and biosphere (world of life), coined by J. Lotman, is a courageous attempt to interconnect two seemingly incompatible worlds. In congruence with his view, I would like to convince the reader that the only possible general definition of life is “a system born, endowed with semiosis, with history”. Such a view requires considering biosphere and semiosphere as coextensive, which requires merging the cultural, scientific, historical, and linguistic approaches into a coherent whole.