Eating Peas with One’s Fingers: A Semiotic Approach to Law and Social Norms

  title={Eating Peas with One’s Fingers: A Semiotic Approach to Law and Social Norms},
  author={Bryan H. Druzin},
  journal={International Journal for the Semiotics of Law - Revue internationale de S{\'e}miotique juridique},
  • Bryan H. Druzin
  • Published 1 June 2013
  • Sociology
  • International Journal for the Semiotics of Law - Revue internationale de Sémiotique juridique
This paper proposes a semiotic theory of norms—what I term normative semiotics. The paper’s central contention is that social norms are a language. Moreover, it is a language that we instinctively learn to speak. Normative behaviour is a mode of communication, the intelligibility of which allows us to establish cooperative relationships with others. Normative behaviour communicates an actor’s potential as a cooperative partner. Compliance with a norm is an act of communication: compliance… 
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