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==Charles Peirce====Sign==In the typology of signs [[sign]]s devised by Charles S Perice. [[Peirce]], the North American semiotician, the [[index ]] is a [[sign whih ]] which has an "existential [[relationship]]" to the [[object ]] it represents(i.(The e. the [[index ]] is always spatially or temporally contiguous with the [[object]]).
Perice ==Symbol==Peirce contrasts the idnex swith [[index]] with the [[symbol]], which, like [[Saussure]]'s [[concept ]] of the [[sign]], is characterized by the [[absence ]] of all necessary connections between the [[sign ]] and its [[object]].
For example, smoke is an [[index ]] of fire.
==Signifier==In [[Lacan]]'s [[discourse]], the term '"[[index' ]]" functions in opposition to the term [[signifier]].
[[Lacan ]] thus conceives the [[index ]] as a '"[[nature|natural' ]]" [[sign]], one in which there is a fixed, bi-univocal correspondence between [[sign ]] and [[object ]] (unlike the [[signifier]], which has no fixed link with any one [[signified]]).
This opposition between [[index]] and [[signifier]] underpins the following distinctions in [[Lacan]]'s [[work]].
===The Psychoanalytic and Medical Concepts of the Symptom===
Whereas in [[medicine]], the [[symptom]] is regarded as an [[index]] of the disease, in [[psychoanalysis]] the [[symptom]] is not an [[index]] but a [[signifier]].<ref>{{E}} p. 129</ref>
Hence in [[psychoanalysis]] there is no one-to-one fixed link between pathological phenomena and the underlying [[structure]]. ===Codes (Animal) and Language (Human)=References==<references/>[[Code]]s are composed of [[index|indices]], whereas [[language]] is composed of [[signifier]]s.
This explains why [[code]]s [[lack]] the most important feature of [[language]]: its potential for ambiguity and equivocation.
The opposition between [[signifier]] and [[index]] is complicated by the [[existence]] of certain [[signifier]]s which also function as [[index|indices]]; these are called [[shifter]]s.
==See Also==
{{See}}* [[codeCode]]* [[Language]]||* [[Linguistics]]* [[Shifter]]||* [[Sign]]* [[Signified]]||* [[Signifier]]* [[Structure]]||* [[Symbol]]* [[Symptom]]{{Also}}
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[[Category:Jacques Lacan]]

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