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Which clippings match 'Theory Of Communication' keyword pg.1 of 1
07 JUNE 2015

Ferdinand de Saussure: Place of Language in the Facts of Speech

"In order to separate from the whole of speech the part that belongs to language, we must examine the individual act from which the speaking-circuit can be reconstructed. The act requires the presence of at least two persons; that is the minimum number necessary to complete the circuit. Suppose that two people, A and B, are conversing with each other [see figure 1 below].

Suppose that the opening of the circuit is in A's brain, where mental facts (concepts) are associated with representations of the linguistic sounds (sound-images) that are used for their expression. A given concept unlocks a corresponding sound-image in the brain; this purely psychological phenomenon is followed in turn by a physiological process: the brain transmits an impulse corresponding to the image to the organs used in producing sounds. Then the sound waves travel from the mouth of A to the ear of B: a purely physical process. Next, the circuit continues in B, but the order is reversed: from the ear to the brain, the physiological transmission of the sound-image; in the brain, the psychological association of the image with the corresponding concept. If B then speaks, the new act will follow-from his brain to A's-exactly the same course as the first act and pass through the same successive phases, which I shall diagram as follows [see figure 2 below].

The preceding analysis does not purport to be complete. We might also single out the pure acoustical sensation, the identification of that sensation with the latent sound-image, the muscular image of phonation, etc. I have included only the elements thought to be essential, but the drawing brings out at a glance the distinction between the physical (sound waves), physiological (phonation and audition), and psychological parts (word-images and concepts). Indeed, we should not fail to note that the word-image stands apart from the sound itself and that it is just as psychological as the concept which is associated with it. "

(Ferdinand de Saussure, Charles Bally, Albert Sechehaye, Albert Riedlinger, Wade Baskin, p.11, 12)

Ferdinand de Saussure, Charles Bally, Albert Sechehaye, Albert Riedlinger, Wade Baskin (1966). "Course in General Linguistics", McGraw-Hill Book Company, New York Toronto London.




1966 • acoustical sensation • Albert Riedlinger • Albert Sechehaye • audition (linguistics) • audition phonation circuit • brain • Charles Bally • circuitcommunication processcommunication theory • Course in General Linguistics (1966) • dialogic • ear • Ferdinand de Saussurehuman expressionimagelanguagelinguistic philosophy • linguistic sounds • linguistics • mental facts (concepts) • messagemodel of communicationmouth • muscular image of phonation • phonation (linguistics) • phonation and audition • physiological process • physiological transmission • psychological association • psychological phenomenon • sound waves • sound-image • speaking-circuit • speechtheory of communication • Wade Baskin • word-image


Simon Perkins

The now discredited hypodermic needle model of communication

"The Hypodermic Needle Theory is a linear communication theory which suggests that media messages are injected directly into the brains of a passive audience. It suggests that we're all the same and we all respond to media messages in the same way.

This way of thinking about communication and media influence is no longer really accepted. In the 1930s, many researchers realized the limitations of this idea and some dispute whether early media theorists gave the idea any serious attention at all. Nevertheless, The Hypodermic Needle Theory continues to influence the way we talk about the media. People believe that the mass media has a powerful effect. Parents worry about the influence of television and violent video games. News outlets run headlines like 'Is Google making us stupid' and 'Grand Theft Auto led teen to kill'."

(Brett Lamb, 12 April 2013)



1930sArthur Bergerassumptions • attitudinal attributes • behaviour systemsbehaviourism • Bernard Berelson • biologically based theory • communication theoryconceptual model • David Croteau • Dennis Davis • discredited theory • Elihu Katz • Hadley Cantril • Hazel Gaudet • Herta Herzog • human instinct • human nature • hypodermic needle model • hypodermic needle theory • hypodermic-syringe model • infusion • injection • James Tankard • linear communication theory • magic bullet theory • mass communicationmedia • media gun • media influence • mental imagemessagemodel of communication • obsolete theory • passive audience • Paul Lazarsfeld • propaganda • shooting metaphor • sitting duck • situational attributes • Stanley Baran • theory of communication • transmission-belt model • unidirectional flow • uniformly controlled • Werner Severin • William Hoynes


Simon Perkins
15 MARCH 2011

A simple abstract model of human communication

"One of the first designs of the information theory is the model of communication by Shannon and Weaver. Claude Shannon, an engineer at Bell Telephone Laboratories, worked with Warren Weaver on the classic book 'The mathematical theory of communication'. In this work Shannon and Weaver sought to identify the quickest and most efficient way to get a message from one point to another. Their goal was to discover how communication messages could be converted into electronic signals most efficiently, and how those signals could be transmitted with a minimum of error. In studying this, Shannon and Weaver developed a mechanical and mathematical model of communication, known as the 'Shannon and Weaver model of communication'. ...

Shannon and Weaver broadly defined communication as 'all of the procedures by which one mind may affect another'. Their communication model consisted of an information source: the source's message, a transmitter, a signal, and a receiver: the receiver's message, and a destination. Eventually, the standard communication model featured the source or encoder, who encodes a message by translating an idea into a code in terms of bits. A code is a language or other set of symbols or signs that can be used to transmit a thought through one or more channels to elicit a response in a receiver or decoder. Shannon and Weaver also included the factor noise into the model. The study conducted by Shannon and Weaver was motivated by the desire to increase the efficiency and accuracy or fidelity of transmission and reception. Efficiency refers to the bits of information per second that can be sent and received. Accuracy is the extent to which signals of information can be understood. In this sense, accuracy refers more to clear reception than to the meaning of message. This engineering model asks quite different questions than do other approaches to human communication research."

(Communication Studies, University of Twente)

Shannon, C.E., & Weaver, W. (1949). The mathematical theory of communication. Urbana: University of Illinois Press.

Hawes, L.C. (1975). Pragmatics of analoguing: Theory and model construction in communication. Reading, MA: Addison–Wesley.

Fig.1 Mathematical (information) model of communication.



abstract modelabstractionaccuracyBell LabsBell Telephone LaboratoriesClaude Shannon • communicating system • communicationcommunication processcommunication theorydisorderefficiencyentropyfidelity • human communication research • information technologyinformation theorymeaning makingmessagemodel of communicationnoise • output • pioneeringpredictabilityrandomness • receiver • reception • redundancysignalsymbolsystems approachsystems theorytheory of communication • transmission • transmission model of communicationtransmitter • University of Twente • Warren Weaver


Simon Perkins

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