I've been looking for some evidence which would support Kirsti's claim that
"It is a historical fact that CSP left his work on sign classifications
aside and proceeded towards other aims." 

 

I haven't found such evidence, but if Peirce actually did that, he must have
done it in 1909 or later. One of the main sources for Peirce's
classification of sign types is his letter to Lady Welby drafted in late
December 1908 (SS 73-86, EP2:478-491, CP 8.342-79). It was here that he set
out his "ten main trichotomies of signs."

 

In 1909-10, many of the pieces that Peirce drafted were entitled by him to
indicate they were about either "definition" (i.e. "logical analysis") or
"meaning." Many of these deal with definitions of "sign" and of sign types.
Here is one example from a 1910 manuscript entitled "Meaning":

 

[[ The word Sign will be used to denote an Object perceptible, or only
imaginable, or even unimaginable in one sense-for the word "fast," which is
a Sign, is not imaginable, since it is not this word itself that can be set
down on paper or pronounced, but only an instance of it, and since it is the
very same word when it is written as it is when it is pronounced, but is one
word when it means "rapidly" and quite another when it means "immovable,"
and a third when it refers to abstinence. But in order that anything should
be a Sign, it must "represent," as we say, something else, called its
Object, although the condition that a Sign must be other than its Object is
perhaps arbitrary, since, if we insist upon it we must at least make an
exception in the case of a Sign that is a part of a Sign. Thus nothing
prevents the actor who acts a character in an historical drama from carrying
as a theatrical "property" the very relic that that article is supposed
merely to represent, such as the crucifix that Bulwer's Richelieu holds up
with such effect in his defiance. On a map of an island laid down upon the
soil of that island there must, under all ordinary circumstances, be some
position, some point, marked or not, that represents qua place on the map,
the very same point qua place on the island. 

A sign may have more than one Object. Thus, the sentence "Cain killed Abel,"
which is a Sign, refers at least as much to Abel as to Cain, even if it be
not regarded as it should, as having "a killing" as a third Object. But the
set of objects may be regarded as making up one complex Object. In what
follows and often elsewhere Signs will be treated as having but one object
each for the sake of dividing difficulties of the study. If a Sign is other
than its Object, there must exist, either in thought or in expression, some
explanation or argument or other context, showing how-upon what system or
for what reason the Sign represents the Object or set of Objects that it
does. Now the Sign and the Explanation together make up another Sign, and
since the explanation will be a Sign, it will probably require an additional
explanation, which taken together with the already enlarged Sign will make
up a still larger Sign; and proceeding in the same way, we shall, or should,
ultimately reach a Sign of itself, containing its own explanation and those
of all its significant parts; and according to this explanation each such
part has some other part as its Object. According to this every Sign has,
actually or virtually, what we may call a Precept of explanation according
to which it is to be understood as a sort of emanation, so to speak, of its
Object. (If the Sign be an Icon, a scholastic might say that the "species"
of the Object emanating from it found its matter in the Icon. If the Sign be
an Index, we may think of it as a fragment torn away from the Object, the
two in their Existence being one whole or a part of such whole. If the Sign
is a Symbol, we may think of it as embodying the "ratio," or reason, of the
Object that has emanated from it. These, of course, are mere figures of
speech; but that does not render them useless.) ] CP2.230 (1910) ]

 

This text has a lot to say about meaning, but it obviously maintains a focus
on signs and various types and functions of signs. If someone can provide an
even later Peirce text that discusses meaning but dispenses with the focus
on signs, I could take that as supporting Kirsti's claim about "historical
fact." Otherwise I don't think that claim stands up to scrutiny.

 

Gary f.

 

} I must follow up these continual lessons of the air, water, earth, I
perceive I have no time to lose. [Walt Whitman] {

http://gnusystems.ca/wp/ }{ Turning Signs gateway

 

-----Original Message-----
From: kirst...@saunalahti.fi [mailto:kirst...@saunalahti.fi] 
Sent: 5-Aug-17 07:00



Jerry, list,

 

It is a historical fact that CSP left his work on sign classifications aside
and proceeded towards other aims. My firm conviction is that he found that
way a dead end. - Anyone is free to disagree. - But please, leave me out of
any expectations of participating in further discussions on the topic.

 

Best,

 

Kirsti

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