In this lecture, Professor Paul Fry explores the semiotics movement through the work of its founding theorist, Ferdinand de Saussure. The relationship of semiotics to hermeneutics, New Criticism, and Russian formalism is considered. Key semiotic binaries–such as langue and parole, signifier and signified, and synchrony and diachrony–are explored. Considerable time is spent applying semiotics theory to the example of a “red light” in a variety of semiotic contexts.
00:00 – Chapter 1. What is Semiology?
08:34 – Chapter 2. “Langue” and “Parole,” “Signified” and “Signifier”
27:08 – Chapter 3. Positive and Negative Knowledge: Arbitrary and Differential
33:11 – Chapter 4. Example: the Red Stoplight
45:55 – Chapter 5. Synchrony and Diachrony
from the Yale Course, Introduction to Theory of Literature (ENGL 300)
This course was recorded in Spring 2009.