Peirce on Person

Peirce on Person: Peirce’s Theory of Determination and the Existence of Personality,” Appraisal, 11:1 (Spring 2016), 26-32. PDF version


In his theory of determination, Charles Peirce considered two processes of determination, the semiotic process and epistemology. The semiotic process is an extensional process from object to interpretant that consists of an infinite chain of references that can be spatially reversible. The epistemological process of determination is temporal and irreversible, where the idea grows into the individual mind, as the universe is unfolded by the agency of mind.

Keywords: Epistemology, Charles S. Peirce, Personality, Semiotics, Theory of Determination

In “The Law of Mind” (1892), Charles Peirce tries to scrutinize the general law of mental action (CP 6.103).[1] Peirce clearly mentions that in “The Law of Mind” he concentrates more on “continuity,” in Peirce’s terminology “synechism,” rather than “spontaneity,” or “tychism” (CP 6.103).[2] Peirce’s interest is thus revealed in his articulation of the law of mind that “ideas tend to spread continuously and to affect certain others which stand to them in a peculiar relation of affectibility. In this spreading they lose intensity, and especially the power of affecting others, but gain generality and become welded with other ideas” (CP 6.104, my emphasis). It is notable, more than the laws themselves, that, after summarizing the general laws of mind, Peirce’s articulation of continuity is extended to “a particular phenomenon which is remarkably prominent in our own consciousness, […] personality” (CP 6.155).

My main attempt in this paper is to delve into Peirce’s idea of “personality” in “The Law of Mind” from the stance of the general law of mental phenomena. To this end, I will start from Peirce’s concept of continuity as revealed in “The Law of Mind” and then turn to Peirce’s “theory of determination,” which, in my consideration, is a backbone of Peirce’s philosophy, and finally examine insights to Peirce’s concept of “personality” that can be derived from the theory.


The Continuity in “The Law of Mind”

In “The Law of Mind,” as well as Peirce’s entire Philosophy, the quest for the structure of meaningful experience prevails regarding the topic of continuity. Peirce notably concerns with his answer to the question how a past idea can be present in the irreversible flow of time (CP 6.107). In reality, a flow of time itself does not allow any connection between ideas, because time is “the universal form of change,” and, therefore, ideas, which are subject to the temporal flow, do not seem to be able to absolutely repeat themselves (CP 6.132). Ideas emergent in temporal process are always gone and thus not equivalent to each other. The issue is then how the connection of a past idea and something that is immediately present to consciousness is possible.

One of the problems that ensue from this problem is the possibility of knowledge. Human beings as well as other organisms that have consciousness live in the continuous process that flows from past events to the present consciousness. The process of gaining knowledge is then based on the secure connection between past ideas and something present to our consciousness. Without the connection of the past ideas and the present, knowledge could never be possible. To keep past ideas from delusion, Peirce demands that there must be a necessary connection between one idea and another that are continuous in the temporal flow (CP 6.108). In order to have knowledge in the flux of time, for Peirce, we should be conscious of a real interval of time that gives “continuity” to ideas (CP 6.110). Peirce, however, does not introduce a finite interval of time in his discussion of continuity. According to Peirce, the present is connected with the past by a series of real infinitesimal steps (CP 6.110). Peirce suggests that only in an infinitesimally spread-out interval, can we immediately perceive the beginning, middle and end of the temporal sequence (CP 6.111). In this rather mathematical way, a past idea can be continuous to the present.[3]

In my estimation, however, Peirce’s theory of determination reveals the determinate process embedded in an idea as a continuum and we can glance at the theory from his mention of three elements of an idea. According to Peirce, a continuum of an idea consists of three discriminate elements. As he puts it:

“Three elements go to make up an idea. The first is its intrinsic quality as a feeling. The second is the energy with which it affects other ideas, an energy which is infinite in the here-and-nowness of immediate sensation, finite and relative in the recency of the past. The third element is the tendency of an idea to bring along other ideas with it.” [CP 6.135]

Then, the three elements of ideas are “quality as a feeling,” “the energy in immediate sensation,” and “connection of ideas.” Quality of feeling, which is a First in Peircean categories, is subjective extension (CP 6.133). Feelings in themselves do not make any continuum. As time flows, or as processes are unfolded, the energy of affection, which seems equivalent to a Second, is rapidly decreased (CP 6.135). But the energy of affection transforms its power into connections of ideas with other ideas, which is a Third. Basically, an idea is a continuum of feelings where “[i]nstantaneous feelings flow together” (CP 6.151). For Peirce, a living idea is hence a continuum of feeling in which ideas influence each other (CP 6.153) and ideas are “living realities” (CP 6.152) that eventually consist of connection of ideas.


A Preliminary Research on Peirce’s Theory of Determination

It seems evident that Peirce started his investigation into determination in his exploration of theory of signs, which he calls semiotics. Peirce’s inquiry into the fundamental characteristic of determination in his early years can be associated with his effort to give a Kantian answer to this problem in his “On a New List of Categories” (1867).  As he puts it: “The unity to which the understanding reduces impressions is the unity of the proposition” (W 2: 49).[4] But the process of moving from “precision”[5] to the conceptions or categories in Peirce’s account is different from Kant.[6] The reason is that Kant’s determination is the process of determining an object for a subject, and the subject is the only agent of determination. He restricts the work of determination as always carried out by the subject, even when that which is determined is also only the subject (as in Kant’s conception of reflective judgment).[7] In the similar context, Kant includes an idea of purposiveness in the process of subjective determination.[8] Such purposiveness is a subjective principle that does not have any power over particular forms of nature; our feeling of purposiveness is a feeling that has influence only on the subject. Kant’s process of determination is thus an interpretive process solely dependent upon subjective powers regardless of the object before the perceiver.

Unlike Kant, Peirce thinks that the determination works in two ways. One way is the path from being to substance described by Peirce as that from a “ground” to the relation with a correlate, and from the relation to an “interpretant” which is the mediating representation. The ground thus determines its relation which, with the ground, determines its interpretant. Another way runs from interpretant through the ground. An interpretant, which is a Thirdness in his categories, presupposes the reference or relation, which is a Secondness, and the reference presupposes quality or a ground, which is a Firstness. Peirce’s conception of determination is hence not a one-way determination that Kant assumes in his articulation from ground to consequence.[9] As functions of semiosis,[10] the object determines the sign which determines an interpretant, while an interpretant also presupposes reference and object (CP 2.92; 2.292).[11]  I would call the former, from object to interpretant, “objectification” and the latter, from interpretant to object, “subjectificaiton,” which is definitely beyond Peirce’s terminology.

My main assumption about Peirce’s intention in his theory of determination is that all modes of determination include both activity and passivity in the process of meaning and creating. Meaning, including knowledge, is created by two determinative processes. If we trace back the path of determination from the object to the interpretant, we will find out that the object has “intelligibility” in its own right, which involves both passive and active processes. The object is thus not devoid of subjectivity. The determination of the object is the process by way of which it becomes cognizable for us. Therefore, whereas Kant has a profound logic in which the subject determines all the predicates, Peirce has a semiotics in which the object determines the interpretant, providing external standard of judging as well as internal preservation of meaning.

Another point that demands attention is that Peirce’s theory of determination from the semiotic perspective successfully elaborates the very nature of “interpretation.” As Gérard Deledalle claims, the process of “interpretation” includes “the sign’s meaning,” which is precisely the interpretant, in Peirce’s semiotics.[12] In interpretational process, being itself sign, interpretant subsists in virtue of another interpretant. This is “an open-ended chain of interpretants,” which is a process of creativity “dependent upon the potential creativity of the interpretant.”[13] This chain of interpretants is the interpretative process itself that stands for the determinative process of signs through mediation.


Two Determinative Processes: Semiotics and Epistemology

It should be noted that Peirce’s semiotics represents one kind of determination, even though it involves two-way determinative processes,[14] and that his theory of determination requires a comparison to his epistemology, which for him is another branch of determination. Peirce thus considered two processes of determination, one from object to interpretant, and the other from idea to mind.

In the first branch of determination, a successful occasion of semiosis proceeds from object to interpretant, as mentioned above. This is “extensional thinking,” which I called “objectification.” As shown in Figure 1 below, the extensional process proceeds from object to interpretant until it succeeds in its determination. This process of determination consists of an infinite chain of references, where each has its predecessor. For this reason, Peirce’s semiotics is spatial. In other words, in this determinative process, references are reversible, and infinitely re-arrangeable, in the presentational space.[15]

Peirce’s epistemology, on the other hand, represents “intensional thinking,” which I called “subjectification” above. The intensional work of the mind is temporal and real. The epistemological process of determination is therefore temporal and irreversible. Unlike extensional processes, this process of determination cannot move backward against the temporal flow. A point that needs our attention is that, in the epistemological process of determination, abstraction is real. In other words, the process of moving from idea to mind is what we really experience. Our way of getting meaningful knowledge and growth can be explained through this temporal process. Thus we begin to see the distinction emerge between the semiotic process and the processes of mind. We may now introduce a distinction between sign processes and knowledge processes. We should, however, keep in mind that, though these processes are distinguishable, they are symbiotic and interpenetrating.

Figure 1. The Processes of Semiotics and Epistemology

As Figure 1 shows, the semiotic process enables us to classify reference and extension according to an infinite chain of determinations, each proceeding from object to interpretant, meanwhile the effect of semiosis is experiential and accumulates meaningful relations through time. It is from the latter determinations that we build our knowledge. Still it is important to remember that problems may emerge in either or both processes, spoiling our efforts to make meaningful inferences and/or successful references. Peirce is concerned with the former meaningful inferences in his illustrations of science, whereas he is concerned more with the latter successful reference in his extensive work on science. The categories, of course, apply equally to both aspects of inquiry.

It is legitimate to question how the two determinative processes unfold. It is true that the two processes are different by their nature and the characteristics of each should be handled with caution in terms of “time” and “space.” In the case of semiotics, the entire process consists of an infinite chain of determination. The whole, however, can be defined by any lesser semiotic process that belongs to the whole. In other words, the whole is present wherever we are now and that is the point to which any included chain leads. At any place in the chain, therefore, every reference that has ever succeeded becomes a sign of the determination of the next interpretant, as well as the present interpretant which is successfully determined by the sign. In such cases, we assume that the sign was successfully determined by the object. Since we could go all the way back to any point in the chain, we could take a certain length of chain as a whole. This is how the “spatial presentation” works. Because all that falls within the limits of length of chain is simultaneously available in the present moment, and because the present moment contains everything that happened before, we have the presentational space that can be defined as a whole. It is beneficial to quote Peirce’s hypothesis about space here: “space is that form of intuition in which is presented the law of the mutual reaction of those objects whose mode of existence consists in mutually reacting” (CP 6.82). Our agency in such a presentational space operates in terms of semiosis and, for that reason, these presentational spaces hold many occurrences of semiosis. In the presentational space, we can thus select our own semiosis, since each involves the successful interpretant determined by a sign. Any selected semiosis includes every operational piece we want to include, regardless of whether it is in the role of sign, or interpretant, or object. In Peirce’s view, this operation is “mutual determination” among signs, as Peirce summarizes this feature of space as its continuity and independency (CP 6.82). In the realm of semiosis, we have continuous space where every object in it independently reacts upon all the others.

In the case of epistemology (see the right side of Figure 1), the limit, from the perspective of knowledge, is the opinion to which ideally situated inquirers in the infinitely distant future are destined to agree. This is the epistemologically stipulated limit of the “whole,” since the flow of time to the infinitely distant future is not reversible and the distant future contains the whole past within itself. The epistemological determination is thus attainable not in the present but in the infinite future. This feature of the epistemological process genuinely reflects the temporality of the process. For Peirce, at the beginning, all the promise of determination resides in one thought[16], which is the formal way to define the metaphysical whole for the sake of finite knowledge, if that can be done. The universe unfolds itself from pure flux and as the universe is unfolded, mind is created. The incarnation of mind is thus the beginning of total shift from the space of presentation, in which semiotic processes dominate inquiry, to the physicality in which ideas become mind.


Temporality and Determination

Now, Peirce’s distinction between semiotic space and epistemological space should be clearer; the semiotic space has infinite limiting possibilities, conditioned by the act of selection in the present, while the epistemological space does not have any exclusive limit. It is not clear, however, that Peirce considers both of these processes wholly subject to, or wholly determined by temporality. It is apt to assume that time should be continuous because we cannot reverse the flow of time, and for that reason, the epistemological process is continually temporal.

There then arises a justifiable suspicion that, according to this line of thought, Peirce might have advocated an idealistic approach to time, something similar to Hegel’s. The commencement of Hegelian idealism is “The Idea” of the world, which is prior to reality. The world then is an “abstract” idea at the beginning. The unfolding process of The Idea is a conceptualizing process, that is, the process of the Begriff, or “the concept,” as it is usually translated. This process is wholly dependent on the work of the Absolute Idea, Spirit, according to which the abstract concept eventually becomes concrete, which Hegel calls “historicization.” For Hegel, historicization is thus real time that is physically lived out. The whole point of Hegel’s idealistic appropriation of time is that The Idea is the form of Spirit’s possibility as it conceives the world abstractly and then the Begriff of the world of the world, becomes concrete history.

Unlike Hegel, however, Peirce thinks that the idea is a physical thing. In Peirce’s view, Hegel missed the point by thinking that Ideas were just the form of Spirit. Ideas would rather be the form of the “physical sportings” of the world when they come into relation with one another; when such activity forms a relation, then these relations are less abstract things relative to the semiotic space. But still they are abstractions relative to What Peirce calls Mind. Then, ideas are historical, not relations. It is thus absurd, for Peirce, that anyone should suppose that ideas are unintelligible and that any attempt to discern them, including language, leads to illusion. Unlike Hegel, Peirce thinks the flux at the beginning is not an abstract idea but the “disorganized feeling.” After the beginning, there arises a feeling’s of the other feeling. It is notable that Peirce sees such “feeling of feeling” as the minimum temporal unit that is required for intelligibility. In the moment when a feeling feels the other, nothing is intelligible until we have a moment that is permanently placed and utterly irreversible in the mutually felt relation between feelings. The chaotic feeling is in relation as soon as the mutual relation starts. The moment of each feeling of the other is the “beginning” and that is a “living idea.”[17] The minimum unit of time thus exists, for Peirce, as one gets the first instances of it. The feeling and felt relation is a mutual relation that does not allow reversibility, since each holds the other responsible. It is true that for Peirce, beyond this responsible mutual relation, there is nothing intelligible. It is a mutual response in the sense that the other feeling’s the first is a responsible response to the second feeling’s feeling the other. In this way, mutual response is necessary for accountability and also temporality. The chaotic flux of feeling itself is not mutually accountable and thus not part of time. Whatever is mutually felt by another can be shared as mutually felt and endures. Any experience that does not rely on this mutuality eventually comes nothing.

Interestingly enough, Peirce’s idea of temporality above seems to lead to a two-fold conclusion. On the one hand, his idea of temporality is not idealistic in Hegel’s sense, because the Idea, or accurately, ideas are located squarely in the intelligible world even though they require mutuality. On the other hand, Peirce’s view seems idealistic in the sense that something that is the part of the flux and does not become the part of our intelligible world comes to nothing. For Peirce, the flux itself is not time, since time is solely constituted by enduring mutuality, i.e., responsibility. The second conclusion needs to be discussed.

The essence of idealistic conception of time is that temporality is the form that enables our experience of time, rather than the reality that we experience. Peirce’s doctrines of the universe are not merely “meta-physical”; they aim at “metaphysical” foundations of our real experience. In Peircean scheme, our experience in the universe is subject to follow the doctrines of the universe. A point worthy of attention regarding this issue is that Peirce presupposes an “absolute First,” as he says, “a truth well worthy of rumination that all the intellectual development of man rests upon the circumstance that all our action is subject to error” (CP 6.86). This can be seen as another manifestation of tychism, the doctrine of absolute freedom. For Peirce, freedom is experienced as real in errors we actually make. In a similar way, we see that Peirce’s idea of temporality is couched in terms of “discontinuity” and “dependency,” which are the essential features of time (CP 6.86). What we experience as temporality is then not continuity; the continuity itself cannot be experienced. Rather, our experience of time is possible somewhere around the discontinuity. The moment of discontinuity, which lies in the present, is thus the place where the past, which actually happened, is distinct from the future, which is construed as possible. The future for the present moment is thus “an object of possible experience” (CP 6.96), which should be dealt with by future researchers. In this sense, Peirce sees time as a “necessitation” dependent on law, as he says, “time is the form under which logic presents itself to objective intuition” (CP 6.87). It is thus possible to suppose that for the purpose of harmonization of meta-physics and physical experience, Peirce introduced a component that seems to be idealistic conception of time as a basis of our temporal experience.


Personality and Determination

Before turning to the topic of personality, two points should be mentioned. Firstly, Peirce never believed that the dualism between subject and object would give a relevant answer to the problem of personality. It is true that, as Vincent Colapietro observes, the personal self of a pure kind is an illusory phenomenon.[18] Peirce rightly knows that a pure kind of self is not possible, since self is a sign that is in the process of developing. For that reason, secondly, Peirce is against the Hegelian scheme of “absolute personality” (CP 2.223), according to which person as the idea has an orientation that is detached from the historicization. For Peirce, person and experience are never separate.

Peirce’s notion of personality in “The Law of Mind” is worthy of lengthy quotation:

“When we consider that, according to the principle which we are tracing out, a connection between ideas is itself a general idea, and that a general idea is a living feeling, it is plain that we have at least taken an appreciable step toward the understanding of personality. This personality, like any general idea, is not a thing to be apprehended in an instant. It has to be lived in time; nor can any finite time embrace it in all its fullness. Yet in each infinitesimal interval it is present and living, though specially colored by the immediate feelings of that moment. Personality, so far as it is apprehended in a moment, is immediate self-consciousness.” [CP 6.155, my emphasis]

Personality, according to Peirce, “has to be lived in time,” but it is not “apprehended in an instant” since any finite time cannot “embrace it in all its fullness.” Yet in each infinitesimal moment, personality is present and living as “immediate self-consciousness.” What exactly is the “immediate self-consciousness,” then?

One possible assumption is that the immediate self-consciousness is what Peirce mentions as “coordination” or “connection” of ideas (CP 6.155). It should be noted that personality, as coordination or connection of ideas, lives in time as well; it grows and is subject to change. For Peirce, the temporal process goes through the reaction of matter to mind and mind is crystalized in that process. Two kinds of mind thus emerge. Because ideas gain more generality, we have the crystalized Mind. The crystalized Mind is virtually what Peirce calls “a general idea.” As time goes by, the connection between ideas becomes more generalized, because as ideas spread, they lose intensity but gains generality. In other words, in the temporal process, ideas gain the determinative power of generality.

But what we can call person or personality has to possess something sui generis. This is another kind of mind. The idiosyncratic person also emerges in the temporal flux by way of two process of determination. Peirce would agree that there are quick alternations between semiotics and epistemology and thus the modes of determination are both intensional and extensional, in function. The semiotic determination is the process of extension in which the object that determines a sign transforms itself into an objective datum for the next interpretant. The very next interpretant becomes subjectified through the intensional process by which mind is shaped and grows. The problem of personal identity is thus a complex of temporal (internal) and spatial (external) processes.

Figure 2. Contact of the Processes in Time

Figure 2 illustrates the point of contact in time between the processes of semiotics and the processes of the creation of mind. Note that the divergence of mind and interpretant is the result of distinguishing the two processes of determination from one another. It does not mean that mind and interpretant are fundamentally distinct, only that spatialization tends to spread the processes of mind across a limited playing of interpretation. If one folds the diagram in half, such that interpretant and mind touch at one point, one has a sense of the divergence involved. It is never the case that mind and interpretant are exactly the same, but they surely converge in the infinitely distant future.

It should not be neglected that the possibility of unique experience of individual mind can be identified with Peirce’s line of thought regarding three elements of idea. According to the second element of idea above, the process of personality in time involves the reaction of “matter.” Against mind that is given as a First, we have a “subjectified” reactional process that occurs in and near a specific matter, which is one’s physical body. Physical conditions of human beings involve context, which result in experience sui generis. The uniqueness of experience of persons is thus derived from the peculiarity of situation where the mind-body complex is located. This point is also justified from Peirce’s sense of idea, since he uses idea not in the substantial sense, but in the sense of an event in an individual consciousness (CP 6.105). The personality is in context which involves semiotic and epistemological processes, since self-consciousness is a knowledge of ourselves (CP 5.225). Therefore, Hegel is denied again. The coordination of creativity, which includes epistemological determination, is necessarily separated from the absolute ego of pure apperception of Hegelian sense (CP 5.235).

The significant aspect of the individual consciousness is then that in the event individual consciousness, person, brings the past and the future ideas together. It is notable that Peirce suggests a potential power that leads us to the infinite distant future ideas. The power is a “teleological harmony in ideas,” which is developmental (CP 6.156). By this developmental teleology, in my estimation, Peirce means a “personal character.” Because of the character, unlike uncoordinated feelings, personality can have a “reference to the future” (CP 6.157). It is true that Peirce’s person is never reducible to the semiotic system, because person always overruns it. It is always on and beyond our objectifying process of determination. If one insists on the determination of sign-object of persons, then the one treats persons in an extremely restricted sense.

In Peirce’s theory of determination, the presence of personal consciousness, among other things, is always the power of source of the determinative process. Personality as immediate self-consciousness is the place where the actual functioning of determination happens. In a moment of immediate self-consciousness, personality is “objectified” as “sign” or “interpretant” through inference that enables us to realize the particular in the realm of becoming. Personality, at the same time, “subjectifies” the most primitive real, which Peirce calls idea, into this temporal world. This process of subjectification enables the continuity of ideas, through which person as idea produces mind as idea. The work of personality is the essential operation of the mind that directs us back to the relationship between mind and idea, as revealed in the process of gaining knowledge, where, in the flux of time, personality enables inferences by anchoring us to the here-and-now context.



Colapietro, Vincent M. Peirce’s Approach to the Self: A Semiotic Perspective on Human Subjectivity. Albany: State University of New York, 1989.

Deledalle, Gérard. Charles S. Peirce’s Philosophy of Signs: Essays in Comparative Semiotics. Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 2000.

———. Charles S. Peirce, 1839-1914: An Intellectual Biography. Amsterdam and Philadelphia: John Benjamins Publishing Company, 1990.

Peirce, Charles S. Collected Papers of Charles Sanders Peirce, Vols. I-VI. Edited by Hartstone, Charles and Weiss. Paul. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1931-35.

———. Collected Papers of Charles Sanders Peirce, Vols. VII-VIII. Edited by Burks, Arthur. Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1958.

———. Writings of Charles S. Peirce: A Chronological Edition, I-Ⅷ Vols. Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 1982-.

Pluhar, Werner S. trans., Kant, Immanuel. Critique of Judgment. Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing Company), 1987.


[1] CP refers to six volumes of the Collected Papers of Charles Sanders Peirce (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1931-35) edited by Charles Hartshorne and Paul Weiss and the seventh and eighth volumes of the Collected Papers (Cambridge, Massachusetts: Harvard University Press, 1958) edited by Arthur W. Burks. The numbers indicate the appropriate volume and paragraph number of the Collected Papers. This system will be followed in the following pages.

[2] For Peirce, metaphysics is the study of “the general features of reality and real objects” (CP 6.6), which, following his categorical scheme, Peirce divided into three universes, tychism, synechism, and agapism.

[3] It is true that Peirce worked again on his conception of continuity, confessing his “blundering treatment of Continuity” in “The Law of Mind” (CP 6.174). The continuity redefined, however, is also dependent on mathematics and logic. .”ove as hat hteirce thinks  , ealism is y of  in conjunction with of an idea.  that involves history.”ove as hat hteirce thinks  , ealism is y of  in conjunction with of an idea.  that involves history

[4] “W” refers to Writings of Charles S. Peirce: A Chronological Edition, Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press published since 1982. The numbers indicate the appropriate volume and page number of the Writings of Charles S. Peirce. The use of the word proposition here calls to mind Whitehead’s unusual definition of the proposition, as a lure for feeling. One might say something similar for Peirce’s meaning in this famous essay.

[5] Interestingly enough, in “The Aims of Education” (1911), Whitehead used the term “precision” in almost same sense as Peirce. The influence between Whitehead and Peirce is extremely difficult to find. My interpretation on that point is that both philosophers are minute self-solvers and find their own way in their own language. After 1911, references to Peirce disappeared from Whitehead’s writing.

[6] Gérard Deledalle, Charles S. Peirce’s Philosophy of Signs: Essays in Comparative Semiotics (Bloomington and Indianapolis: Indiana University Press, 2000), 6.

[7] Werner S. Pluhar, trans., Immanuel Kant, Critique of Judgment (Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing Company, 1987), 15-18.

[8] Kant, Critique of Judgment, 26-28.

[9] See the Kant’s articulation in Critique of Judgment, 435.

[10] It is worthy to note that Peirce distinguishes semiosis, semiotic and semiology based on his division of aesthetics, ethics and logic. This distinction between feeling, action and logic thus allows three types of interpretant, that is emotional, energetic, and logical interpretants. I mention semiotics in a general sense, interchangeably with semiosis or semiology, without recourse to this distinction.

[11] “The words only stand for the objects they do, and signify the qualities they do, because they will determine, in the mind of the auditor, corresponding signs.” [CP 2.92]; “A Symbol is a Representamen whose Representative character consists precisely in its being a rule that will  determine its Interpretant. All words, sentences, books, and other conventional signs are Symbols.” [CP 2.292]

[12] Deledalle, Peirce, xiii.

[13] Deledalle, Peirce, xiii.

[14] In reality, the process of interpretation is possible only by work of two determinative processes, as I shall say below.

[15] However, it should be stressed that the semiotic process from object to interpretant is determinately continuous. In other words, a clear-cut separation between object, sign and interpretant is impossible, because they are processes. The minimum successful unit of semiotics thus includes the seamless continuum of object, sign, and interpretant.

[16] By “thought,” I tried to mean an activity of idea that involves “physical sportings,” without which idea cannot be intelligible, as we shall see below.

[17] This is what I expressed “thought” in the above. I think this point reveals Peirce’s similarity to process philosophy.

[18] Vincent M. Colapietro, Peirce’s Approach to the Self: A Semiotic Perspective on Human Subjectivity (Albany: State University of New York, 1989), 65.

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