Update
The Oxford Biblical Studies Online and Oxford Islamic Studies Online have retired. Content you previously purchased on Oxford Biblical Studies Online or Oxford Islamic Studies Online has now moved to Oxford Reference, Oxford Handbooks Online, Oxford Scholarship Online, or What Everyone Needs to Know®. For information on how to continue to view articles visit the subscriber services page.
Dismiss

Related Content

More Like This

Show all results sharing this subject:

  • Media studies

GO

Show Summary Details

Overview

empty signifier


Quick Reference

(semiotics) Variously defined as a signifier with a vague, highly variable, unspecifiable, or non-existent signified. Such signifiers mean different things to different people: they may stand for many or even any signifieds; they may mean whatever their interpreters want them to mean. Those who posit the existence of such signifiers argue that there is a radical disconnection between signifier and signified (see also poststructuralism). For a Saussurean semiotician no signifier can exist without a corresponding signified—to qualify as a sign something must be signified.

Subjects: Media studies


Reference entries