Seminar 6 – Inglês 7 – 2012/2  Adriena Casini da SilvaDiego Guedes Paiva de Assis Ramon dos Santos Souza
Kress, G.; van Leeuwen, T.
MAIN PURPOSE OF THE TEXT: The aim of the authors is to discuss the increasing use of images to communicate and the lack o...
   Near the middle of secondary school, students    tend to emphasize illustrations a lot less than    in the beginning o...
 What  can you say about your time  at school? What subjects used images the  most? What were the roles behind these  u...
When can one be considered a fullyand literate social person? The authors believe it occurs when someone can see writing ...
 What kind of reader are you? How do you perceive information? Do you repeat the words in your  mind, vocally or you do...
 ...“the      opposition    to    the  emergence of the visual as a full  means of representation is not  based on an opp...
   What determines this is the order images    and verbal texts appear.   When the latter is shown first, the image    i...
 Thatis a hard question to answer. What do you think? Language    can be objective or subjective. It is subjective when ...
 Analyze this picture. What‟s in it? Some would say it is just an ordinary woman. It is indeed. This is the objective tak...
   This occurs when there is a different    perspective, or angle, in which one can    analyze said image. It is possible...
   This concept gives freedom to people    involved with the text in terms of    creation and interpretation, but it is  ...
   It goes without saying    that Hope‟s lingerie    ad      stirred      up    embarrassment and    anger on people,    ...
   “Language in its spoken form is a natural    phenomenon, common to all human groups.    Writing, however, is the achie...
 Historytells us that the logic path of society is for normally letting visual texts become secondary to written language...
   This picture is a representation of a “bathroom” of the real    world as people know it. There is no other reason for ...
   Now, this image is a bit different. No words can    be seen, consequently, the reader is not    induced to think anyth...
   The first pictures brings less freedom to the mind    of a person, but is more realistic. It is good for kids    to me...
   The code here allows people to see flags that represent    countries, USA and USSR, with the left side representing th...
“Is the move from the verbal to       the visual a loss or a gain?”“The world represented visually on thescreens of the ‘n...
If it is a gain or a loss it is unclear. What is   clear, however, is the move from verbal   to visual. Kress and Leeuwenn...
Speech and written language being themain source of expression is quitearguable. What we call “speech organs”are an adapta...
“The new realities of the semioticlandscape are brought about by social,cultural and economic factors: by theintensificati...
Using the example if the child Kressand Leeuwen illustrate how complexmeaning-making relations can beexpressed through the...
“Speech was the mode used for„ratifying‟ and for describing whathad taken place without it.”(p.36)
Siân Davies
MAIN PURPOSE: Analysis of semiotic codes of the  front covers of teenage magazines  to demonstrate how the media  constru...
MAIN IDEAS Magazinesdemonstrate an up-to-date representation of constructed femininity in our media and society and there...
A  magazine is “just a collection a signs”. (Bignell 1997: 78). Signs    are   paradigmatic    and syntagmatic elements s...
   Signs consist of signifier and signified;    there is meaning when "it has someone to    mean to" (Williamson 1978: 40...
 McRobbie  (1996):We can see that it becomes a       magazines seekfamiliar friend for the female:    to        "furtheri...
 Function   of magazines:a) "to provide readers with a sense ofcommunity, comfort, and pride in thismythic feminine ident...
   It is argued that the average teenage    reader will be a heterosexual girl    seeking a boyfriend (or seeking a way t...
   Front Cover of magazines:   It initially attracts the    reader and is a taster of    what can be seen within    the ...
CONTRASTINGMORE! AND 19 FRONT COVERS:
 Title:   it anchors the texts to the genre              of teenage magazines. 19 seems to be directed More! also acquire...
 The taglines reinforce these ideas as they are placed directly underneath the titles in a contrasting black font; as the...
   The tagline adopted by More! is therefore    effective as the modern British teenage girl    will construe an appropri...
   According to Bignell,                                         the     images     of                                   ...
   The model in the cover    of More! again embodies the    self for the reader, she    represents the more! "ethos of   ...
   Women watch themselves being looked    at … Thus she turns herself into an    object - and most particularly, and    o...
SOME CONCLUSIONS   As McRobbie notes, sex now fills the space of    the magazines pages. It "provides the frame    for wo...
   Kimberley Phillips argues that these magazines    therefore "reinforce the cultural expectations    that an adolescent...
   We observed that there has been a shift to    more visual communication, written and    spoken language may not be the...
   To the teenage girl reader, her favorite    magazine symbolizes a community that she is    part of, where she can expr...
 Finally, we can conclude that there  is a shift on communication, which  means a change on how the message  is spread an...
   Kress, G.; van Leeuwen, T. The semiotic    landscape:     language   and    visual    communication. Reading Images: t...
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The grammar of visual design seminar 6 adriena casini, diego guedes, ramon dos santos

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This is the Slides presentation of seminar 6 (INGLÊS 7 - UFRJ/ 2012-2). As the pptx is too heavy to upload on moodle, we had to do it on slideshare. We hope you do not have problems to access it. Att, Group 6:
Adriena Casini, Ramon dos Santos and Diego Guedes.

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The grammar of visual design seminar 6 adriena casini, diego guedes, ramon dos santos

  1. 1. Seminar 6 – Inglês 7 – 2012/2 Adriena Casini da SilvaDiego Guedes Paiva de Assis Ramon dos Santos Souza
  2. 2. Kress, G.; van Leeuwen, T.
  3. 3. MAIN PURPOSE OF THE TEXT: The aim of the authors is to discuss the increasing use of images to communicate and the lack of a means for dealing and analyzing what is meant through this said imagery and all that is visual, specially with children.
  4. 4.  Near the middle of secondary school, students tend to emphasize illustrations a lot less than in the beginning of it. Images become specialized and less frequent, generating conflict nowadays “in which writing and image are in an increasingly unstable relation”. (p 16) Children stop drawing (or any kind of visual production) for self-expression and channel their attention to the direction of specialization – away from „expression‟ and towards technicality. In other words, images did not disappear, but they became specialized in their function”(p 16) as seen in Biology, for example, when human organs and cells are depicted in books, or in the IT field, with boards and cables. Children need to learn to know the difference between these situations and to possess the skill to act when immersed in both of them. Unfortunately, for the authors, this knowledge is yet to be taught in schools.
  5. 5.  What can you say about your time at school? What subjects used images the most? What were the roles behind these uses: decorating or informing?
  6. 6. When can one be considered a fullyand literate social person? The authors believe it occurs when someone can see writing as a visual medium without vocalizing it, reading aloud or reproducing it inside their heads. Those who don‟t achieve this can be often be seen as readers stained with resorting to speaking, which is considered a poorer modality of the language.
  7. 7.  What kind of reader are you? How do you perceive information? Do you repeat the words in your mind, vocally or you don‟t repeat them at all?
  8. 8.  ...“the opposition to the emergence of the visual as a full means of representation is not based on an opposition to the visual as such, but on an opposition in situations where it forms an alternative to writing and can therefore be seen as a potential threat to the present dominance of verbal literacy among elite groups”. (p 17) In other words, there is no replacement as far as languages go. Visual, written and spoken are supposed to co-exist.
  9. 9.  What determines this is the order images and verbal texts appear. When the latter is shown first, the image illustrates it. This technique was dominant for a long time in the past, like in the Bible, in mythology, for example making written texts the “authority” in society. When the former is the first to be seen, words state and define something in a better manner paving way for better understandings, thoughts and discussions. This is called “anchorage”. This is more frequent nowadays when images start to be more naturalistic becoming the “windows on the world” or “the book of nature”, while words “identify and interpret”. And this sums up the age of images and science in this aspect.
  10. 10.  Thatis a hard question to answer. What do you think? Language can be objective or subjective. It is subjective when verbs indicating mental processes are present, as in “I suppose Rio is a violent city” and vice-versa. What about images? How can they be classified using these criteria? The answer will be shown in the next two slides.
  11. 11.  Analyze this picture. What‟s in it? Some would say it is just an ordinary woman. It is indeed. This is the objective take on the image.
  12. 12.  This occurs when there is a different perspective, or angle, in which one can analyze said image. It is possible to see that with the picture below, in which the lens determine the perspective and subjectivity of the pictures. In other words, we can see the same woman through different perspectives. 28mm lens 85mm lens
  13. 13.  This concept gives freedom to people involved with the text in terms of creation and interpretation, but it is not made only of perks. “In an advertisement, for instance, it may be that the verbal text is studiously „non-sexist‟, while the visual text encodes overtly sexist stereotypes.” (p 20) We would like you to recall a seminar we have seen in class before and ask you to reflect on this sentence: “I‟ve maxed out your credit card.” Then, combine this verbal text with the image in the following slide.
  14. 14.  It goes without saying that Hope‟s lingerie ad stirred up embarrassment and anger on people, specially among females, when Gisele Bündchen taught women how to seduce their partners while giving them bad news.P.S.: We would like to thank the girlsof seminar 1 for giving us this idea.
  15. 15.  “Language in its spoken form is a natural phenomenon, common to all human groups. Writing, however, is the achievement of only some”.(p 22) Anybody can and always could speak, but only a minority of cultures had always had that privilege. In the American continent, for example, lots of native cultures died for a lack of written registry. Despite this question of survival, writing became a matter of being practical. How else would a shepherd manage to keep track of his herd of sheep, for example? Human memory is not like computers‟. In a nutshell, language is like a living being susceptible to evolution. “A wavy line eventually became the Chinese ideogram for “water”; the hieroglyphic image of the ox‟s head which initially “stood for” “ox” eventually became the letter “aleph” , “alpha”, and then “a” (p 21), originating, thus, the alphabet we know today.
  16. 16.  Historytells us that the logic path of society is for normally letting visual texts become secondary to written language. When images are secondary, when they are unstructured reflections of the real world, the concept of “old visual literacy” is seen. “New visual literacy” occurs when language and visual representation co-exist perfectly. In the next slide, an example of this is shown.
  17. 17.  This picture is a representation of a “bathroom” of the real world as people know it. There is no other reason for these objects to be there than the fact that they are typical bathroom objects. They are not connected, thus, the verbal text could be maintained and the picture changed by another bathroom‟s, that the message behind them would remain untouched. Reality and the image are analogous, as normally people would think by seeing the realistic features of it. “It is a message without a code”.(Barthes, 1977: 17) In other words, people do not need to “convert” information to understand the picture. They just look at it and perceive things.
  18. 18.  Now, this image is a bit different. No words can be seen, consequently, the reader is not induced to think anything besides what it is shown. But that doesn‟t diminish their importance and participation, it just makes it different. By being unrealistic, this image now has a code. The reader must look at the elements and associate them, by using the said code, with an element in real life that resembles it: “trees” and “birds”, for example.
  19. 19.  The first pictures brings less freedom to the mind of a person, but is more realistic. It is good for kids to memorize and associate words and sounds with things from the real world. It is like a documentary with real pictures and a voice is guiding you through the whole process. The second picture is free of shackles. It values more the image but it also does the same with language because it lets the reader interpret and tell a story the way he prefers. A father can, for example, tell a story about a bird sleeping on a tree, or the same bird can be waiting for someone, for a friend, etc. There are unlimited possibilities as long as the elements are coherent towards one another. It compares do a film in which “the selection of images and in the sometimes hardly noticeable ways in which these images are edited together”. (p 29) Images can also suffer a transformation and an “uncoded” image can become coded. The position of the people in question, the objects they hold, where they are looking, their gestures, facial expressions, etc, can all form a code. One example of this, a picture from the movie “Rocky 4”, from 1985, is shown here in the next slide.
  20. 20.  The code here allows people to see flags that represent countries, USA and USSR, with the left side representing the West and East on the right. And also, the American flag representing capitalism and the soviet corresponding to the red color of the communist side. Finally, it is a good thing to remember that this film was released during the Cold War, so the subtleties meant a lot more in that time than it does today.
  21. 21. “Is the move from the verbal to the visual a loss or a gain?”“The world represented visually on thescreens of the ‘new media’ is a differentlyconstructed world to that which had beenrepresented on the densely printed pages ofthe print media of some thirty or forty yearsago.” (p.31) “Could it be the case that information is now so vast, so complex, that perhaps it has to be handled visually, because the verbal is no longer adequate?”
  22. 22. If it is a gain or a loss it is unclear. What is clear, however, is the move from verbal to visual. Kress and Leeuwenn summarize their views in order to better understand this change:(1) Visual communication is always coded. It seemstransparent only because we know the code already, at leastimplicitly – but without knowing what it is we know, withouthaving the means for talking about what it is we do when weread an image. A glance at the „stylized‟ arts of other culturesshould teach us that the myth of transparency is indeed amyth. We may experience these arts as „decorative‟, „exotic‟,„mysterious‟ or „beautiful‟, but we cannot understand them ascommunication, as forms of „writing‟ unless we are, orbecome, members of these cultures.(2) Societies tend to develop explicit ways for talking onlyabout those semiotic resources which they value most highly,and which play the most important role in controlling thecommon understandings they need in order to function. Untilnow, language, especially written language, has been themost highly valued, the most frequently analysed, the mostprescriptively taught and the most meticulously policed modein our society. If, as we have argued, this is now changing infavour of more multiple means of representation, with astrong emphasis on the visual, then educationalists need torethink what will need to be included in the curricula of‘literacy’, what should be taught under its heading in schools,and consider the new and still changing place of writing as amode within these new arrangements.
  23. 23. Speech and written language being themain source of expression is quitearguable. What we call “speech organs”are an adaptation of organs developedfor something else. Considering this, achange from verbal language to visuallanguage seems more acceptable. Verballanguage became the maincommunication device through culturalreasons and it is also cultural reasonsthat generate this change.
  24. 24. “The new realities of the semioticlandscape are brought about by social,cultural and economic factors: by theintensification of linguistic and culturaldiversity within the boundaries of nationstates; by the weakening of theseboundaries within societies, due tomulticulturalism, electronic media ofcommunication, technologies oftransport and global economicdevelopments. Global flows of capitaland information of all kinds, ofcommodities, and of people, dissolvenot only cultural and politicalboundaries but also semioticboundaries.” (p.36)Language use (in publiccommunication) is changing fromthe mode of communication toone mode among others.
  25. 25. Using the example if the child Kressand Leeuwen illustrate how complexmeaning-making relations can beexpressed through the visual mediumalone.
  26. 26. “Speech was the mode used for„ratifying‟ and for describing whathad taken place without it.”(p.36)
  27. 27. Siân Davies
  28. 28. MAIN PURPOSE: Analysis of semiotic codes of the front covers of teenage magazines to demonstrate how the media constructs the image and behavioural ideology of the teenage girl.CORPUS OF THIS ANALYSIS: The issue 359 of More! (December 27 th 2001 - January 8th 2002) and the January 2002 edition of 19.
  29. 29. MAIN IDEAS Magazinesdemonstrate an up-to-date representation of constructed femininity in our media and society and therefore arguably represent to the reader what constitutes the modern teenage girl.
  30. 30. A magazine is “just a collection a signs”. (Bignell 1997: 78). Signs are paradigmatic and syntagmatic elements such as the title of the magazine, the fonts used, the layout, the colours, the texture of the paper, the language adopted, the content of the articles and so on, and each of these signs have been chosen to generate a meaning. The magazine is a complex collection of signs that can be extensively decoded and analyzed by its reader. The magazine is a sign in itself, which "connects together the mythic meanings of femininity and pleasure" (Bignell 1997: 66). Paradigmatic and syntagmatic elements determinate the dominant ideology of teenage femininity in the media.
  31. 31.  Signs consist of signifier and signified; there is meaning when "it has someone to mean to" (Williamson 1978: 40). This is the „decoding‟ process: basic recognition, textual comprehension, interpretation and evaluation of its meaning. (Chandler, web source Semiotics for Beginners). As the relationship between the signifier and the signified is arbitrary and meaning is rooted in cultural values, we can argue that the potential interpretations of any given magazine are therefore endless.
  32. 32.  McRobbie (1996):We can see that it becomes a magazines seekfamiliar friend for the female: to "furtherit advises her, and provides consolidate andentertainment, amusement andescapism for the reader and fix an otherwisespeaks to her in a language she more unstableunderstands - the lingo of sense of bothteenagers is used self and gender"in 19 and More!, for example"Top Totty".  Curran (1996): magazines seem to be central to society as they create a culture, a culture of femininity where a common experience of girlhood is shared.
  33. 33.  Function of magazines:a) "to provide readers with a sense ofcommunity, comfort, and pride in thismythic feminine identity" (Bignell 1997:61).b) to promote a "feminine culture(McRobbie 2000: 69)c) to define/shapes the womans world"(McRobbie 2000: 69) The magazine therefore symbolizes a lifestyle, a life of luxury and pleasure. The magazine claims to be simultaneously a luxury item and a familiar friend to its reader. Itattempts to convince us that it is not a fictive document, that it is a true reflection of reality
  34. 34.  It is argued that the average teenage reader will be a heterosexual girl seeking a boyfriend (or seeking a way to gratify the needs of her boyfriend),enjoying shopping, fashion, and popular culture and needing plenty of advice on sex and love. This is the reader to whom most teenage magazines cater; they broadcast to a stereotypical mass - which is arguably an artificial representation and does not reflect the identities and lives of all teenage girls).
  35. 35.  Front Cover of magazines: It initially attracts the reader and is a taster of what can be seen within the contents of the magazine. It is an "important advertisement" and "serves to label its possessor" (McLoughlin 2000:5). It will also promise that "the contents of the magazine… will fulfill the needs of the individual and her group" and sells a "future image" of the reader as "happier, more desirable" (Bignell 1997:67).
  36. 36. CONTRASTINGMORE! AND 19 FRONT COVERS:
  37. 37.  Title: it anchors the texts to the genre of teenage magazines. 19 seems to be directed More! also acquires this at a person who is 19, quality of idealism, but or at least who thinks as the word stretches she is as mature as a across the width of the 19year old. As the title page it could be stands boldly in the top suggested that left-hand corner of the the More! reader is page, this is the image more sassy and larger that the eye is initially than life in comparisonIf we drawn towards. and Leeuwens theory of layout, or are to adopt Kress to the more mature thiswill also give the magazine a sense of idealism, reader sophisticated suggestingthat the reader should aspire toof 19 (this is further attain the life and imagereferred to within the pages (in Bell 1997: 193). by the substantiated exclamation mark - More! - and by the girlish pink colour of the 19 logo).
  38. 38.  The taglines reinforce these ideas as they are placed directly underneath the titles in a contrasting black font; as the reader will presumably be familiar with the content of the magazine, the polysemic nature of the tagline will not be apparent to them. 19 states that the More‟s tagline - "Smart magazine is "Barefaced girls Get More!“ suggests Cheek!“. It gives that smart girls buy theextensive coverage of the magazine as they know it issues of sex, love and will provide pleasure and fashion to the reader. information for them, However this tagline and also that smart girlscould also be interpreted (the (perhaps to a non- attractive More! reader) teenager reader) as get more out of life, implying that the reader love, and, most of 19 is cheeky and importantly, sex. impertinent Reading More! will improve your life on many levels, if you listen to the advice offered within the magazine.
  39. 39.  The tagline adopted by More! is therefore effective as the modern British teenage girl will construe an appropriate interpretation that will give them the urge to buy the product. Both 19 and More! also attempt to attract their readers by placing a female character in the center of the cover, as we can see in the next slides.
  40. 40.  According to Bignell, the images of beautiful women on the covers of female magazines are "iconic signs which represent the better self which every woman desires to become" (Bignell 1997: 69).  The figure thus represents the self for the reader, a future image that is attainable for her if she continues readingThe model seen on the coverof 19 is the typical girl next-door, and learning from theblonde haired, tanned, tall and magazine.slim girl with perfect complexionand perfect features.  On a male magazineShe embodies the message however the samethat 19 habitually transcribe to figure wouldthe reader - look innocent and represent a sexualbeautiful and yet be in control of image, an object toyour own sexuality and your be attained by therelationships. male reader.
  41. 41.  The model in the cover of More! again embodies the self for the reader, she represents the more! "ethos of youthful, cheeky impertinence" (in Curran 1996: 189) Her hair and red, low-cut dress suggest that she is sassy; a vixen that has sexual needs and is not afraid to fulfill them. This model does not appear as innocent as the 19 model. The innocence is challenged here as the More! model raises her eyebrow into an arch; she has a glint in her eye and pouts her lips proudly. As we notice the presence of a man in the left hand side of the front cover, we therefore interpret this facial expression as sexual prowess - this girl knows what she wants and she knows exactly how to get it. The male figure is not personalized; indeed we only see a leg, an arm and a crotch and yet we are fully aware of the masculinity of the character. This could suggest that, in subversion to the representation offered within male magazines, the man is the sexual object here.
  42. 42.  Women watch themselves being looked at … Thus she turns herself into an object - and most particularly, and object of vision: a sight" (Berger in Vestergaard & Schrøder 1992: 81). This is a somewhat negative interpretation of the centrality of women on the covers of magazines. However, Bignell sees that "while the cover image is for a woman to look at, it is constructed with reference to a wider social code in which being feminine means taking pleasure in looking at oneself, and taking pleasure in being looked at by men" (my italics, Bignell 1997: 71). Bignell therefore seems to empower the woman in his analysis of cover models, noting that women simultaneously enjoy looking and being looked at.
  43. 43. SOME CONCLUSIONS As McRobbie notes, sex now fills the space of the magazines pages. It "provides the frame for womens magazines in the 1990s" and "marks a new moment in the construction of female sexual identities" (in Curran 1996: 177). It is worrying to think that the explicit sexual representations within the magazines, sex has been packaged as a "commodity" (McLaughlin 200: 13) by these magazines in recent years and the young readers have eagerly jumped at the chance to buy such (what was previously) censored material. Indeed, fifty years ago the teenage magazine industry differed greatly to that of today. According to Vestergaard we have seen a shift from "motherhood and childcare to the maintenance of physical appearance" (Vestergaard & Schrøder 1992: 81)
  44. 44.  Kimberley Phillips argues that these magazines therefore "reinforce the cultural expectations that an adolescent woman should be more concerned with her appearance, her relations with other people, and her ability to win approval from men than with her own ideas or expectations for herself”. It can also be argued however that young women are encouraged to develop independence by these magazines. The magazine is therefore a "powerful ideological force" in society (McRobbie 2000: 69); the image and behavioural ideologies presented within the magazine covers become the stereotypical norm for the teenage girl. Teenage magazines may not provide an altogether accurate representation of all teenage girls today, but it is certainly a medium that provides escapism and enjoyment for the reader whilst subliminally educating and informing at the same time.
  45. 45.  We observed that there has been a shift to more visual communication, written and spoken language may not be the most effective communication mode. Nowadays, through images we can also carry messages and points of views. A magazine is a collection of signs – which are paradigmatic and syntagmatic elements – that share ideology. Teen magazines front covers are especially built to attract the attention of the teen readers by semiotic elements. The cover model‟s photo, the title of the magazine, tagline, colors, fonts, lexis choice are signs of identification not only of the content of the magazine but also the behavior and beliefs of the reader.
  46. 46.  To the teenage girl reader, her favorite magazine symbolizes a community that she is part of, where she can express herself and get informed about topics that are „polemic‟, like sex. However, teen magazines do not represent individuality because they have a determinate view of “girl” (heterosexual, interested on beauty/fashion tips and on dating a boy), not being able to cover particularities of each reader. We believe that these semiotic elements are perceptible to the teen reader just in the sense of creating an identification to the magazine, it does not sound as an affirmation of a female stereotype, or an ideology. Personally, you only can identify the other purposes if you have the tools (like discourse analysis knowledge) to do it. It is not commonly possible to be realized by teenager readers searching for fun/information.
  47. 47.  Finally, we can conclude that there is a shift on communication, which means a change on how the message is spread and what message. Media, generally, is more attached to visual than verbal elements to attract readers ‟attention on buying their products. But Media also worries about what their public wants, their needs; if fifty years ago „sex doubts‟ would be a banned section in teen magazines, nowadays it is common to have it. It shows a change on behavior and thought of teenage girls and society, in general.
  48. 48.  Kress, G.; van Leeuwen, T. The semiotic landscape: language and visual communication. Reading Images: the grammar of visual design. London: Routledge, 1996: 16-44. Davies, Siân. Semiotic Analysis of Teenage Magazine Front Covers. Available on: www.aber.ac.uk/media/Students/sid9901. html - Access on November, 16th, 2012.

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