Thursday, November 13, 2008

Politics and Semiotics

An interesting bit I've heard kicked around the Internet is: "If Obama is elected, the first thing he'll do it take care of his own people."

One concept in semiotics is the level of abstraction, a phrase that assigns a framework to the attributes we assign to an object. What categories we put it into. Obama is; the son of a 'broken' home, the son of a Kenyan, a lawyer, a husband, a male, a world-traveler, a Harvard graduate, a senator, a professor, a father, an admitted former drug user, a smoker, a published author, former editor of the Harvard Law Review, a basketball player, a successful politician, and a human being, a comic-book reader, and a liberal, among many other designations. To single any one out, I think, says a great deal more about the individual interpreting the statement than it does about the president-elect.

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