Logonomic signs as three-phase constraints of multimodal social semiosis
Abstract: The article introduces the concept of logonomic sign as an elaboration on Hodge and Kress’s promising yet under-examined ideas about logonomic systems. Logonomic signs are defined as socially devised signs that constrain multimodal semiosis by restricting who is able to produce what signs under what circumstances. Based on the Peircean categories, the functioning of logonomic signs is modeled as a three-phase process of (1) logonomic understanding (production of the meaning that is the Initial Interpretant of a logonomic sign), (2) logonomic actualization (production of the actual semiotic event that is the Dynamical Interpretant of a logonomic sign), and (3) logonomic reproduction ((re)production of the semiotic Habit that is the Final Interpretant of a logonomic sign). Based on Kull’s theory of evolution of semiotic systems, logonomic signs are theorized as mechanisms of retention and standardization of semiotic Habits. The mechanism of reproduction of logonomic signs is modeled as a sign in which past logonomic semioses function as Objects by being iconically represented by similar current logonomic semioses functioning as Representamens, and in which future logonomic semioses are produced as Interpretants. The methodological potential of the proposed concept is discussed in the context of the integrative transdisciplinary capacity of semiotics in social research.