School of Communication and the Arts
Doctor of Philosophy
semiotics, Marshall McLuhan, The Revelation, satire, parody
Communication | Rhetoric and Composition
Chaix, Jaix, "The Medium/Message Is The Message: Intersemiotic Complementarity in James Hogg's The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a (Justified) Sinner" (2022). Doctoral Dissertations and Projects. 3454.
This semiotic analysis identifies and characterizes how textual, compositional, and mathematical resources have been strategically articulated to project intersemiotic complementarity in the book The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner; Written by Himself: With A Detail of Curious Traditionary Facts, And Other Evidence, By The Editor attributed to Scottish author James Hogg. This qualitative study approaches the original 1824 edition as a literary work in its original compositional medium as a printed book—not as a text. A theoretical extension of philosopher and media theorist Marshall McLuhan’s maxim The Medium Is The Message serves as a basis for the overall theoretical perspective and metatheoretical argument of this study: The Medium/Message Is The Message. Following an approach based upon close reading within a framework for page-based analysis of intersemiotic complementarity developed by semiotic theorist Terry Royce, this study investigates how intersemiotic complementarity appears to be an integral part of The Confessions (1824) along with satirical parody of the content and composition of The Revelation as printed in The Holy Bible. This study includes a chapter devoted to the analysis of intersemiotic complementarity within The Revelation in the 1611 edition of The Holy Bible and a chapter that compares subsequent editions of The Holy Bible (1655, 1662, 1806) that belonged to Hogg. Another chapter of analysis identifies the empirically evident instances of intersemiotic complementarity and other forms of compositional significance in the original 1824 edition of The Confessions. The findings of this study evidence Hogg’s extraordinary strategic interfusion of content and composition in producing the original 1824 edition of The Confessions and indicate how ultimately The Medium/Message Is The Message.
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