From the Sign to the Passage: A Saussurean Perspective

Carrasco, William J.

This paper traces the development of Saussure’s concept of the sign (or kenome) to the notion of passage proposed by François Rastier. This way of viewing semiosis substitutes the two-faced monadic sign with an open-ended and fully contextualized relation between two planes of language. While a sign is an artifact of interpretation, a passage is a moment of ongoing interpretation, a praxeology. The passage thus participates in a rhetorical-hermeneutic problematic based on a deontology and a non-realism, instead of a logico-grammatical or representational problematic. Although it has been developed within the semiotics of natural languages, the passage offers us a new way of looking at other semiotic performances and thereby contributing to the development of the semiotics of cultures.



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More About This Work

Academic Units
Biology (Barnard College)
Published Here
February 4, 2015


Citation Information: Carrasco, William J. "From the Sign to the Passage: A Saussurean Perspective". Texto! Textes & Cultures. Vol. XX (2015), n°1. URL :