Editorial 4: Layered Discourses, Dynamic Semiotics

  • Jan M. BroekmanEmail author
  • Larry Catá Backer


Legal semiotics has its problems with semiotics in general in so far as law is in many regards and very much despite the urgent need to change this feature, a static discourse. It is only since Russian structural linguistics, Greimas and Kristeva, that this need to further a dynamic semiotics is registered. That urge is described in the 4th editorial and brought in relation with Greimas’ notion of different layers characterizing a text. The dynamic approach to semiotics as exposed in Julia Kristeva’s essay “The Engenderment of the Formula”, from which key fragments are translated in the final chapter of this book for the first time, is introduced to understand the surface character of texts as produced by deep layers. In the case of law and legal discourse, this need for dynamics is a fascinating project. It focuses on the specific textual structure of law’s discourse and its institutionally controlled surface. This type of dynamic semiotics has wide-ranging consequences in Court practices as well in legal scholarship.


Social Phobia Structural Linguistic Legal Discourse Final Chapter Grammar System 
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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing Switzerland 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Dickinson School of LawPenn State UniversityCarlisleUSA
  2. 2.Departments of Law and International AffairsPenn State UniversityUniversity ParkUSA

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