m of care – oct 13

Peirce, Semiotics, back to David Graeber. Perspectives for a revolutionary study of signs?’


Charles Sanders Peirce, which will be presented by Federico Montanari

In a few days! Thurs Oct 13, 8pm London time:

A lecture about Charles Sanders Peirce, presented by Federico Montanari and entitled “Peirce, Semiotics, back to David Graeber. Perspectives for a revolutionary study of signs?”

Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/museumofcare/status/1579508717732536323


The David Graeber Philosophical series will resume after the holidays with a lecture about Charles Sanders Peirce, which will be presented by Federico Montanari and is entitled ‘Peirce, Semiotics, back to David Graeber. Perspectives for a revolutionary study of signs?’.

In this seminar I would like to explore the interest and possible path linking David Graeber’s thought to semiotics, and to Peirce (since Peirce is considered among Graeber’s philosophers of reference). But is it also possible to identify, in perspective, a “radical” use of semiotic analysis of sense and meaning making, in the directions Graeber’s anthropology left us? (For example, with the concepts of “experience,” or “relation” typical of pragmatism? Or perhaps with the same idea of sign, and Semiotics, moreover also taken up by Deleuze and Guattari?) And, in this regard, what links with the other philosophers he considered as sources and interlocutors?

notes/quotes from meeting:

simona: david’s way was to ask the big questions

f: he can be considered another great anarchist of thought.. from david’s what is the point if we can’t have fun – on watching an inchworm.. link between play and fun and amusement.. neglected concept.. where does it come from

david on fun

f: on thinking about the much more complex and non deterministic process.. g bateson .. one of graeber’s fundaments references.. particularly w the model and idea of schismogenesis – non causal, non linear mech


f: for bateson (jumping to meta level), who takes concept from peirce (initiating hypothesis), abduction is a process of thinking.. idea of play and fantasy (bateson)

f: connected to idea in peirce’ other important quote from graeber ‘the free process of play offset by that principle of repetition’

f: peirce begins his work as a scientists.. mathematician, statistician, scholar of logic, field research.. then he stops and formulates first theory of his thoughts.. first is about logic

f: on uni not hiring brilliant.. original people..

f: in 1860s a change.. a new list of categories.. his phase of searching laws of logic of thought.. begins to think about these no longer just as logical but as sense producing processes.. this is (huge).. about the invention of meaning and sense.. (peirce): firstness is the mode of being which consists in its subject’s being positively such as it is regardless of aught else.. that can only be a possibility..

f: from here we come to 2nd major phase.. the formulation of a true phenomenology (he calls it ‘phaneroscopy’).. previous categories transformed.. no longer belong to logic but become pre logical ideas’ anal of how the world appears.. an observational science.. (david : observation of what.. from which pov).. it’s about the production of sense and meanings of the world

not sure legit free people would care/be about that

f: on taxonomy of which icon, index, symbol are most universally known.. which to recombine w others.. et al.. looks like a mendeleev’s table of images and signs (deleuze).. how we perceive the war et al

f: on relations.. categories as dynamic an processual relations.. although graeber doesn’t have an explicit semiotic attitude.. he takes from , his teach and now co author marshall sahlins (on kings) and from much structural anthropology (levi strauss) the search for deep symbolic processes

on kings

f: on amusement connected to abduction.. but not as a logic process.. a tension in peirce’s philosophy between purpose driven nature of inquiry destined to achieve truth in long on one one hand an don other.. fact that inquiry depend up musemsent (peirce word for amusement – free play of ideas) which is pruposeless.. not about intuition.. musement is a joyful process of discovery.. fantasy inside research.. musement a challenge and neglected subject

f: concerning fundament and perhaps controversial point: the overcoming or total reversal of marxist positions thanks to this interest in semiotic and cultural process of meaning making.. metapersons.. et al.. david was looking for these mechs.. (graeber): ‘magic involve causative mechs we simply don’t yet understand.. uniformly treated w violent hostility in the intellectual mainstream.. that specualte about such possibilities.. cast out as flakes.. but what if some of them were right.. (2015 in racial alterity)

david on radical alterity

f: finally.. connection w deleuze an guattari.. on one hand graeber shows he appreciates them sometime she is a bit ironic and critical.. they are interested in semiotics.. so i’ll like to leave you in this controversial point.. is our philosopher connected to semiotics or not

left after talk





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