Interpretive delirium begins only when man, ill-prepared, is taken by a sudden fear in the forest of symbols. (Andre Breton, L’amour fou)
‘One afternoon I put my feet up on the table I inherited from my father, stared at his cupboard, and concentrated, sure he would materialize next to me. How could he not be there when those things were so much part of him? Wasn’t he in fact still there, in his things? If I just concentrated hard enough he would come out and I’d be able to see him.'(1)Anonymous testimonial, Rio de Janeiro 2009. As attached as we can be to things, as meaningful as they may seem to us, they are in fact just that – things.
This investigation attempts to understand the process by which, during inheritance, we succumb to the fallacy of believing that objects are meaningful. In order to do so, it examines theoretical models of meaning creation and how they apply in daily life. Just as psychoanalysis presumes that dysfunction can help us understand function, inheritance is interesting because it lays bare the traditional mechanisms by which we assign meaning to objects in daily life.(2)Hal Foster, Rosalind Kraus, Yve-Alain Bois et.al., Art since 1900. Modernism, Antimodernism, Postmodernism, Londen 2007, pp. 35-36. It works as a magnifying glass, clearly revealing a process occurring so continuously that we become completely unaware of it.
My interest in this subject is not only that of the passive viewer (which I also am) wondering why I am lured by things. Being a designer, I feel the necessity to establish what my role is as an active maker of objects. Being aware of the problems that can arise due to objects from the past inherited in the present, the aim of this research is to determine not what to do with the inheritance of the past, but to establish what type of inheritance can be designed today that will not perpetuate the same problems in the future.
Background: inheritance as case study
Of course the first thing I did was to type ‘family inheritance’ in Google – I was surprised to find 0 relevant hits. But when I typed ‘family clutter’ I found thousands of desperate people who didn’t know how to deal with all the stuff they inherited. Barry S. Lubetkin, Ph.d and Clinical Director and Founder of the Institute for Behavior Therapy in New York, observed ‘a number of patients living with inherited furniture they hate. It’s an unhealthy setup, in which people become slaves to inanimate objects. […] Once you’re defining it as something you can’t get rid of, you’re not in control of your life or your home.'(3)Joyce Wadler, ‘The Tyranny of the Heirloom’, The New York Times June 26, 2008.
Jane Hammerslough, author of Dematerializing: Taming the Power of Possessions, points out that ‘EBay is kind of the great resource for those tortured by possessions, because you can see what this fabulous and rare thing is worth in a completely objective way, and separate it from, Oh, my God, I am selling my father.'(4)Jane Hammerslough, Dematerializing: Taming the Power of Possessions, Cambridge MA 2001. An ‘inheritor’ therefore can be understood as a ‘collector’, as a figure ‘who resists the reduction of the object to either use-value or exchange-value, and who mobilizes a particular kind of fetishism.'(5)Interview Professor Mireya Soarez de Suarez 2009; quote from Foster et al, p. 603. As Walter Benjamin explained, ‘collectors elevate the commodity to the status of allegory, finding hidden stories therein.'(6)Quoted in Foster et al, p. 603.
So what are these inherited objects? ‘Things. Family things’ – John answers in the film Everything is Illuminated (2008). John collects any object that belonged to his family: an elastic, a key, a lighter. He labels it, puts it in a zip lock bag, and as such he builds his idea of his family tree. As pointed out in The Tyranny of the Heirloom, the reason why people can’t throw out objects they hate is that: ‘Get rid of the family furniture and you’re sure to lose the stories […]; you’ll lose your history.’ It’s the feeling that to throw out grandfather’s watch is like throwing away the grandfather. Although most of us know that grandfather is not really in the watch, we cannot do it.
Inherited objects are experienced as a golden cage: as something of value but which possesses the owner rather than being possessed by him.
Trying to understand what made them particularly meaningful, I first looked at inherited objects themselves. However, two observations made me realize meaning would not be found by looking at the objects themselves. First, that ‘inherited clutter can come in many forms […] out-dated coupons, years of saved wrapping paper, my grandmother’s childhood doll collection… `(7)http://unclutter.com/2007/07/13/handling-inherited-clutter-part-1. And the second is that the meaning of the objects changes through the act of becoming inherited. Instead of rubbish, they become evidence of the accumulation of any number of things such as time, energy, money, or knowledge.(8)Neusa Rolita Cavedon et al., ‘Consumo, colecionismo e identidade dos bibliofilos: una etnografia em dois sebos de Porto Alegre’, Horiz. Antropol. 13 (2007) 28, pp. 345-371, p. 347. For John, the objects he collects are not valuable in themselves but because they stand for, literally re-present (take the place of) family members.
The main reason why people cannot get rid of objects they themselves say they hate is that possessing them marks the inclusion of a person as belonging to a group, thus functioning as a symbolic representation of the family.(9)Cavedon 2007, p. 347; Marcel Mauss, Ian Cunnison, Edward Evans-Pritchard, The Gift: Forms and Functions of Exchange in Archaic Societies, Abingdon 1970. ‘The role of the sign is to represent, to take the place of something else while alluding to it by virtue of a substitute.'(10)Kyong Liong Kim, Caged in our own Signs: a Book about Semiotics, Westport 1996, p. 13. But this connection between the inherited object and what it evokes is symbolic: ‘A symbol is a sign that is made in an arbitrary manner. Hence, there is neither resemblance nor existential connection between the sign and its referent.'(11)Kim 1996, p. 21; This definition applies to inherited objects in that the memory that an inherited object evokes and the reason why this memory is connected to the object is arbitrary. Or as Victor Margolin and Richard Buchanan say in their book The Idea of Design: ‘Objects are assimilated into personal, private lives and are given symbolic meaning as expressions of the order of private experiences. Objects take on symbolic value with reference to one’s history. The meaning of our private lives is built with these household objects.'(12)Victor Margolin, Richard Buchanan, The Idea of Design, Cambridge MA 1995, p. xvii.
Analysis: how do we create meaning?
The version is more important than the truth. (Miguel Alvaro Ozorio de Almeida, Brazilian ambassador to Russia, China, USA and Australia)
A. Theory of meaning creation
If the very meaning of our history, private lives and identity is built around objects, what is the process by which we attribute meaning to them? In order to analyze this abstract and complex situation, besides looking at it from a design perspective, I also interviewed professors from the following fields: anthropology, philosophy, art history, media studies, semiotics and linguistics. This multidisciplinary approach was invaluable, giving me the tools to be able to think about objects by analyzing their context rather than by just looking at the objects themselves.
For the purposes of the present investigation, the model of meaning creation from the semiotician C.S. Peirce is more adequate than the linguist’s, Ferdinand de Saussure. Peirce understands the creation of meaning as a dynamic process resulting from the relationship between concrete things and viewer, while De Saussure’s model implies that meaning exists independently of its expression.(13)Semiotics is the study of sign processes, in other words, of signification and communication, signs and symbols, both individually and grouped into sign systems. It includes the study of how meaning is constructed and understood. The following description is based on Prof. Leo Hoek’s semiotics class which I attended at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam in February 2009.
Peirce explains the process in three basic steps, starting with the sensory perception of an object. An object ‘out there’ in the ‘real world’ is considered only in terms of it being a sign: as something concrete that can be perceived. As such, the only connection between our internal and external realities is our sensual perception. Once we have internalized the perception we no longer relate to the external sign; we continue the process of meaning creation based only on our internalized perception. When the physical object becomes imprinted in the mind it can actually disappear, because the image ‘imprinted in [the] brain remains there for a longer period of time even after the real [object] withers away.'(14)Kim 1996, p. 8. We then proceed to transform our perceptions into ‘conceptions’; in other words, we interpret our sensory perceptions and form an idea about what those perceptions are. Next we evaluate that idea in comparison to all the other ideas we have, thus giving it meaning. Once we give a meaning to our perception, we no longer relate to the original sign at all but only to the internal meaning we formed about it.(15)Kim 1996, p. 13. But what happens next is that we externalize our meaning, superimposing it on the object in the world, thus confusing the original sign that we perceived with the meaning we ourselves constructed for it.
This process is so continuous and smooth that we hardly ever notice it at all. There are many implications that can be derived from this, but the most relevant ones to the present study are:
1. The only thing we know about objects is our perception. Therefore Kant’s ‘thing-in-itself’ doesn’t exist as such (and if it does, since we cannot perceive it and therefore cannot know it, it doesn’t matter whether or not it exists).
2. The object does not have any inherent meaning.
3. The meaning of objects is determined by our internal context.
4. We think that we are dealing with objects in the world while in fact we are only dealing with our internal interpretations that we project onto the external world.
This raises the ambiguous question of the importance and role of concrete materiality. If all we know of objects are our own perceptions and projections, does that mean that things don’t matter? ‘Because sensory organs, which hear, see, or touch, are also material ones, communication can be considered as a phenomenon arising through their materiality.'(16)Kim 1996, p. 8. Imagine you inherit two sets of cutlery, one made of silver and the other made of plastic. You chose to only keep the silver because it is more ‘valuable’. This would make it seem as though the value was inherent in silver, although it isn’t; it only means that in your context you attach more importance to silver and another person could have chosen to keep the plastic set for other reasons. This points to an ambiguous conclusion: the materiality of things is very important in that our perception of them is the only bridge we have to the world outside ourselves.(17)Johannes G.Y. Warndorff, ‘Van Dit en Het’, Trouw June 14, 1997. And it is based on our perception of their materiality that we will construct the meaning of the object. However, it also explicitly reveals that meaning is not in materiality but is simply an internal, subjective construction.
B. How the theory applies to meaning creation in daily life
On a daily basis we don’t notice how all objects are signs and that in fact we are always making interpretations in order to make sense of them: ‘As a producer of signs, man is forever condemned to signification. […] Nothing that man utters is insignificant – even saying “nothing” carries a meaning.'(18)Foster et al 2007, p. 33. So to impregnate objects with meaning is ‘normal’ – life would be pretty difficult if each time we looked at something we had to figure out its significance anew.(19)Interview Prof. Paul van den Hoven, Media Studies University of Utrecht, 1 April 2009.
Although it can be said that any material production by a human is a sign, the ‘functional’ everyday objects that cause so much trouble to inheritors are particularly interesting to this study. During inheritance a ‘functional’ object mutates into a ‘symbolic’ one and the problem is that this transformation goes unnoticed. But in daily life, how do we distinguish between utilitarian and symbolic objects? How do we know, for example, that Duchamp’s readymades, such as Fountain, are not to be used nor even understood in terms of their use?
The following is an extract from an interview with Prof. Dr. Barend van den Heusden, Letteren en Media Communicatie, Universiteit van Groningen: ‘We can understand the difference between functional objects and art as a difference in degrees. Both art and utilitarian objects are first of all concrete objects. As such they do exist but all that we know is the representation we make of them in our minds. For example this chair: it is an object and all we can know about it is the idea we form through the data we receive via our perceptions of it. In this way the only thing we know of this object is our own representation of it. This is a first degree of representation, and this is how we perceive daily objects. If a painting is made of this chair, or a sculpture is made after it, the resulting art object can be said to be a second degree of representation, because it represents the representation we make of concrete reality.'(20)Interview Van den Heusden, 15 April 2009.
However, in daily life, instead of thinking about objects in terms of 1st and 2nd degrees of representation, we think of some of them as being ‘non-representational’ (0 degrees) and others as being ‘representational’. This way of looking at things implies the possibility of knowing the thing-in-itself directly – which, as explained by Peirce, is actually not possible. The 0 degree ‘real chair’ does not exist; all that we can know of anything is always but our own representation of it.(21)Interview Prof. Hans van Driel, Media and Culture Studies, University of Tilburg, 8 April 2009.
It is therefore possible to say that the way we give meaning in everyday life is based on the erroneous belief that most objects are 0 degree ‘real objects’ that exist and have meaning independently of us, and that only some other objects are symbolic and representative. We make this distinction between ‘real’ and ‘symbolic’ without even noticing. So the first problem is that we make a false distinction and categorization, and the second problem is that we don’t even realize that we do so.
The error of treating as a ‘real thing’ something that is not concrete but merely an idea is a process of reification. Reification, according to Wikipedia, is defined as ‘a fallacy or an ambiguity, when an abstraction (belief or hypothetical construct) is treated as if it were a concrete, real event or physical entity.’ Therefore giving meaning is a constant process of reification: first we mistake the image we make of the object for the concrete thing, and then we proceed to treat the concrete thing as if its meaning existed independently of us!
So how is this relevant to our everyday life? Marx argued that in fact the whole of our capitalist society is built upon our very ability to reify. The belief that we can ‘acquire’ and ‘own’ value and meaning as if it existed in the object independently of the meaning we give it, makes us particularly vulnerable to ‘commodity fetishism’. Marx’s critique in Das Kapital is that capitalism ‘fetishizes’ commodities, and in so doing, promotes the erroneous belief that value inheres in commodities themselves instead of being added to them. As such we become actively encouraged, in daily life, to confuse our representation of the object for the object itself, so that the value of goods can be easily manipulated and increased. As Jean Baudrillard argues in his book For a Critique of the Political Economy of the Sign, the power of reification has become total: as consumers we buy the advertised meaning of the product rather than the object itself.(22)Jean Baudrillard, For a Critique of the Political Economy of the Sign, St. Louis 1981. Deyan Sudjic, director of the Design Museum in London goes further, comparing consumers to the geese that are force-fed for the production of foie gras, saying that while geese still get in a panic when they see the man with the metal tube to stuff food into them, we fight for our place in the queue that will feed us an endless wave of objects that construct our world.(23)Deyan Sudjic, The Language of Things, London 2008.
Naomi Klein makes a powerful case in her book No Logo, showing how susceptible consumers are to branding.(24)Naomi Klein, No Logo: Taking Aim at the Brand Bullies, Basingstoke 2003. She argues that consumers buy the ‘image’, the ‘idea of the product’ rather than the product itself. Nike is one such example: people are happy to buy the idea of the product (lately, ‘power and freedom to women’), which is simply an image constructed by its ads (even though the social reality of its manufacturing, in which most employees are young women working in sweatshops, is completely contradictory to this image). There is also the question of how different the actual Nike product is from any other product; Klein argues that in most cases, the only difference really simply is the logo – which incidentally comes from the Greek logos, meaning – ‘idea’.
Problem statement: understanding the problem of inheritance through theoretical analysis
The problem is that in daily life we are unaware that instead of dealing with objects we are in fact only dealing with our ideas of them. Being unaware that we project our ideas on top of concrete things in the first place, we then proceed to deal with our projections as if they were objective things. The pathology of inheritance develops directly from the unawareness of this daily process of reification. Believing that an object can be itself valuable in daily life is the mechanism that makes it possible to believe that meaning can be contained in an object independently of the viewer such as in the case of inheritance.
Although this may sound abstract, this problem is pretty close to home, and not only created by giants like Nike, McDonalds and Microsoft. In his recent Premsela lecture ‘Dasein als Design’, Henk Oosterling explains how ‘At the start of the Industrial Revolution there was still the question of essential necessities […] but with the growth of daily comfort […] design itself has become a basic necessity.'(25)Henk Oosterling, ‘Dasein als Design’, De Groene Amsterdammer, April 3, 2009, pp. 32-35. He goes on to say that in the 150 years of design history, only recently has the question of the meaning of the object become a core issue, and he quotes Hella Jongerius: ‘People have had enough of novelty, now they expect objects to be meaningful. People want to become attached to things.’
But this investigation points to the fact that the very belief that objects can be meaningful is the origin of our troubled relationships to them. Therefore the making of ‘meaningful’ objects not only does not address the source of the problem, it covertly aggravates it, because even the abstract concept of meaning can be reified and turned into a commodity with market value. Looking up Oosterling’s lecture on the web, I bumped into a handful of products that had turned the title of his lecture into a logo.
In another recent article, ‘Wij zijn eerlijk, koop ons’ (We are honest, buy us), the authors Martin Lindstrom (inventor of ‘buyology’) and Hans P. Brandt (author of Identity 2.0) advise: ‘the bad news is that consumers now know that they are being manipulated.'(26)Hans P. Brandt, Martin Lindstrom, ‘Wij zijn eerlijk, koop ons’, Credits Magazine (2009) 1, pp. 14-16, p. 15. The solution? Fake honesty – subtly. Here I echo Bruce Mau as quoted by art historian Hal Foster in Design and Crime: ‘So where does my work fit in? What is my relationship to this happy, smiling monster? Where is the freedom in this regime? […] What actions can I commit that cannot be absorbed? Can I outperform the system? Can I win?'(27)Hal Foster, Design and Crime (and other Diatribes), London 2002, pp. 24-25.
I am not an outsider to this situation: I myself am also actively involved in trying to manipulate my audience to believe my objects have meaning with the goal of profit and fame: just look at what I am doing right now. I am trying to shape the way you are going to evaluate my designs later on. The pressing question for me therefore is: How can I, as a designer, continue making objects but in a way that doesn’t manipulate the viewer into thinking that my work has any meaning independent of his own construction of it?
Hypothesis: meaning is in the eye of the beholder
The death of interpretation is to believe that there are signs, signs that exist primarily, originally, really, as coherent, pertinent, and systematic marks. The life of interpretation, on the contrary, is to believe that there are only interpretations. (Michel Foucault, This is not a Pipe)
If we are aware in daily life that objects don’t have intrinsic value and that we are the ones who construct their meaning, then when the situation of inheritance comes we will be less susceptible to reification fallacy.
Proposal: de-signing design
from the Latin res ‘thing’ + facere = ‘to make’ ; literally it means ‘thing-making’; the turning of something abstract into a concrete thing or object. (Webster’s Seventh New Collegiate Dictionary)
An idea (abstract) that depends on the intelligence and skill of the maker to be constructed. (Gijs Bakker, interview 24 November 2008)
If the aim is to bring awareness to the unseen mechanism of giving meaning to objects in an everyday situation, how can this be done? This has been the central and most difficult question of this whole investigation. To find fault with the status quo as an observer is one thing, but since I recognize myself as being part of the problem I want to try to find possibilities from within the design practice – and this has really been quite a challenge.
It is possible to say that the very history of art is an attempt to make the invisible process of reification apparent again: ‘the main function of art is to defamiliarize our perception, which has become automatized’, and to explore ‘the different possible interactions between the representation of space and the space of representation.'(28)Foster et al 2007, p. 603; Mieke Bal, Louise Bourgeois’ Spider: the Architecture of Art-writing, Hong Kong/Chicago 2001, p. 114. Visual arts aims ‘to liberate the sign system towards estrangement and indeterminacy […] thus setting the imagination of the viewer free.'(29)Foster 2002, It is to this end that, for example, Picasso continuously changed his style of painting, as he explains: ‘In those days people said that I made the noses crooked, even in the Demoiselles d’Avignon, but I had to make the nose crooked so they would see that it was a nose. I was sure later they would see that it wasn’t crooked.'(30)Quoted in Foster et al 2007, p. 35.
According to Hal Foster, instead of creating ambiguity through de-formation, surrealism created estrangement through the blurring of categories, unsettling the idea of what is real via the simulacrum.(31)Hal Foster, Compulsive Beauty, Cambridge MA 1993. Michel Foucault explains how this works: ‘When we say one thing resembles another, after all, we imply that the latter is somehow […] more “real” than the former.'(32)Michel Foucault, This is not a Pipe, Berkeley 1983, p. 8. So through the act of copying, it is the copy that has the power to transform whatever it imitates into a ‘real model’; as such, it is the copy rather than the model, that indicates reality: ‘classical painting – using techniques from perspective to trompe-l’oeil– attempted to identify scenes or images with the “models” that inspired them. […] [I]nto the painting, in theory an exclusively visual production, there creeps a secret: “This painted image is that thing.”‘(33)Ibidem. In order to escape the fallacy of reification [believing that a representation can be reality] Foucault points to the possibility of making images that are ‘simultaneously familiar and non-representational’ so that ‘things are cast adrift, more or less like one another without any of them being able to claim the privileged status of ‘model’ for the rest.'(34)Foucault 1983, p. 9.
This is exemplified in Rene Magritte’s painting, La Condition Humaine. The painting gives the false indication that there is a ‘reality’ that can be imitated. As such, the painting facilitates the mistake to think that ‘reality’ exists independently of interpretation. It is in this way that Foucault means that the copy of reality, the simulacrum, hides the secret fallacy of thinking that what it copies is real.
Therefore, instead of trying to resolve the conflict between materiality and meaning, it is more effective to take Foucault’s hint and do the opposite as Mieke Bal argues: to accentuate the ambiguity, making it impossible to categorize, define and feel certainty about the meaning that can be given to objects. To confuse ‘illusionistic three-dimensional space […] and the real space of the real viewer, again three-dimensional’ and make that confusion ‘the habitat of the present’, so that ‘figural, represented space cannot be distinguished clearly from literal, primary space. The space of representation is an ambiguous zone. Just as the line between inside and outside cannot be drawn, so also the distinction between model and representation is fluid.'(35)Bal 2001, p. 115, p. 30, p. 79.
In his book Caged In Our Own Signs: a book about semiotics, Kyong Liong Kim explains that an image loses its power when it turns into a clear idea without any ambiguity. Thus, by making it difficult for an object to fit in a category, it becomes impossible to form an idea about it and therefore it is necessary to constantly remain ‘seeing’ it: ‘An image with persisting ambiguity is mind boggling. It continues to linger on the edge of consciousness, behaving like a mysterious object that invites only ambiguous feeling. Such an image is an enigma. […] As long as our perception sticks with the image, the ambiguous image causes us to produce numerous narratives. […] Images are signs that enter into the field of our perception through the opening of feeling, and they interact with us only at this level. An image eschews our cerebral, logical discourses […], it is visceral; it is not an object to be comprehended by the brain but one to be felt by the heart and gut. We weave our own narratives around images in hopes of capturing them.'(36)Kim 1996, p. 47.
I cannot show the non-existence of meaning in things, but what I can do is to show that we can only perceive the existence of meaning due to arbitrary contingencies that are not inherent to the object itself. My aim is for the viewer to doubt whether the meaning of my work isn’t actually after all about the contingencies around it. As such the viewer notices that any interpretation he gives is simply his own construction and that the object itself doesn’t have any independent meaning. Design is de-signed: functional objects clearly demonstrate that they are but representations of the viewer, thereby causing the familiar to become strange, and the sign to no longer signalize.
Meanings are always unstable; but man always searches for stability. (Kyong Liong Kim 1996)
The parallel examination of how inherited objects become meaningful and how we create meaning in daily life produced unforeseen insights into both questions. The analysis of inheritance revealed that the problem lies not in the object itself but in the meaning the inheritor gives to it. The analysis of the theory of meaning creation exposed that the daily habit of thinking that the meaning exists independently in the object is ultimately responsible for the problems experienced by inheritors. The hypothesis therefore was that if we are aware in daily life that objects don’t have intrinsic value and that we are the ones who construct their meaning, then when the situation of inheritance comes we will be less susceptible to reification fallacy. Ultimately the aim of the research was to determine what kind of objects would be worthwhile designing for the future, with a view to inheritance. The conclusion is de-signed designs: objects that confuse the conventions of representation so that the viewer becomes aware in daily life that he is the one constructing meaning since the object itself has none.
My conclusion is therefore squarely counter-intuitive compared to present day design practice, for it proposes that rather than working with concepts like value, attachment, engagement, quality, et cetera, ‘to design for the future’ actually means to expose the inherent meaninglessness of objects. It attempts to bring the awareness in daily life that a pair of shoes is not going to transform identity and that a piece of furniture does not contain a family member. Of course to de-sign still means a level of manipulation, yet with the explicit purpose of advocating the idea of non-attachment to things.
Joana Meroz, thesis Master of Design, Design Academy Eindhoven 2009.
noten [ + ]
|1.||↑||Anonymous testimonial, Rio de Janeiro 2009.|
|2.||↑||Hal Foster, Rosalind Kraus, Yve-Alain Bois et.al., Art since 1900. Modernism, Antimodernism, Postmodernism, Londen 2007, pp. 35-36.|
|3.||↑||Joyce Wadler, ‘The Tyranny of the Heirloom’, The New York Times June 26, 2008.|
|4.||↑||Jane Hammerslough, Dematerializing: Taming the Power of Possessions, Cambridge MA 2001.|
|5.||↑||Interview Professor Mireya Soarez de Suarez 2009; quote from Foster et al, p. 603.|
|6.||↑||Quoted in Foster et al, p. 603.|
|8.||↑||Neusa Rolita Cavedon et al., ‘Consumo, colecionismo e identidade dos bibliofilos: una etnografia em dois sebos de Porto Alegre’, Horiz. Antropol. 13 (2007) 28, pp. 345-371, p. 347.|
|9.||↑||Cavedon 2007, p. 347; Marcel Mauss, Ian Cunnison, Edward Evans-Pritchard, The Gift: Forms and Functions of Exchange in Archaic Societies, Abingdon 1970.|
|10.||↑||Kyong Liong Kim, Caged in our own Signs: a Book about Semiotics, Westport 1996, p. 13.|
|11.||↑||Kim 1996, p. 21; This definition applies to inherited objects in that the memory that an inherited object evokes and the reason why this memory is connected to the object is arbitrary.|
|12.||↑||Victor Margolin, Richard Buchanan, The Idea of Design, Cambridge MA 1995, p. xvii.|
|13.||↑||Semiotics is the study of sign processes, in other words, of signification and communication, signs and symbols, both individually and grouped into sign systems. It includes the study of how meaning is constructed and understood. The following description is based on Prof. Leo Hoek’s semiotics class which I attended at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam in February 2009.|
|14, 16.||↑||Kim 1996, p. 8.|
|15.||↑||Kim 1996, p. 13.|
|17.||↑||Johannes G.Y. Warndorff, ‘Van Dit en Het’, Trouw June 14, 1997.|
|18.||↑||Foster et al 2007, p. 33.|
|19.||↑||Interview Prof. Paul van den Hoven, Media Studies University of Utrecht, 1 April 2009.|
|20.||↑||Interview Van den Heusden, 15 April 2009.|
|21.||↑||Interview Prof. Hans van Driel, Media and Culture Studies, University of Tilburg, 8 April 2009.|
|22.||↑||Jean Baudrillard, For a Critique of the Political Economy of the Sign, St. Louis 1981.|
|23.||↑||Deyan Sudjic, The Language of Things, London 2008.|
|24.||↑||Naomi Klein, No Logo: Taking Aim at the Brand Bullies, Basingstoke 2003.|
|25.||↑||Henk Oosterling, ‘Dasein als Design’, De Groene Amsterdammer, April 3, 2009, pp. 32-35.|
|26.||↑||Hans P. Brandt, Martin Lindstrom, ‘Wij zijn eerlijk, koop ons’, Credits Magazine (2009) 1, pp. 14-16, p. 15.|
|27.||↑||Hal Foster, Design and Crime (and other Diatribes), London 2002, pp. 24-25.|
|28.||↑||Foster et al 2007, p. 603; Mieke Bal, Louise Bourgeois’ Spider: the Architecture of Art-writing, Hong Kong/Chicago 2001, p. 114.|
|30.||↑||Quoted in Foster et al 2007, p. 35.|
|31.||↑||Hal Foster, Compulsive Beauty, Cambridge MA 1993.|
|32.||↑||Michel Foucault, This is not a Pipe, Berkeley 1983, p. 8.|
|34.||↑||Foucault 1983, p. 9.|
|35.||↑||Bal 2001, p. 115, p. 30, p. 79.|
|36.||↑||Kim 1996, p. 47.|