Analysis of discourses and verbal texts expressed in oral and written modalities and of nonverbal texts

Research Projects:

The enunciative scene and the creation of the expression plan

Description: At first restricted to the areas of content plan because of the theoretical scope of the generational path model of meaning, semiotics proposed by A. J. Greimas and his collaborators address an expression plan with semi-symbolic systems theory; in more recent studies, J. Fontanille, giving continuity to the semiotics analysis of expression, proposes a generational journey, now applied to this field of meaning. The research project developed encounters this last theoretical proposal, since it is dedicated to the verification of analytical reaches of the model of generational path of expression model; but also intends to advance this field of analysis, for it intends, as initial study hypothesis, that the expression can be studied from the constructed enunciative scene, yet in the content plan, through the formal apparatus of enunciation, which would already forward, in the relations established between co-enunciators and in arrangements between themes and figures, specific modes of generation of expression and textual manifestation.

Professor in charge: Antonio Vicente Seraphim Pietroforte (


The construction of meaning in different types of text

Description: The project is concerned with theoretical and methodological issues in the context of the French semiotic theory, especially at narrative and discursive level, in different genres, modalities, and types of text. We analysed, especially, the linguistic-discursive procedures of verbal, spoken, and written texts, and of visual and gestural texts.

Professor in charge: Diana Luz Pessoa de Barros (


Difference and dependence in the production of meaning: semiotic issues

Description: Referring to the theoretical pattern of the Semiotics School of Paris, we propose a discussion of such far-reaching concepts that support a whole line of research marked by names such as Saussure, Hjelmslev, and Greimas, seeking subsidies also in the recent contribution of the tensive schematism (Zilberberg, Fontanille). The research is interested, on one hand, in the epistemological implications of choices made within that context, and on the other, in the descriptive consequences regarding operating tests of the models under construction. This last requirement includes also the analytical practice of texts, especially of contemporary Brazilian literature.

Professor in charge: Ivã Carlos Lopes (


Semiotic Studies on relations between texts, images, and graphs in scientific discourses

Description: This project intends to analyse the production of meaning given in scientific figures and images that populate not only the internet, but also scientific books and those of scientific dissemination (pictures of the big bang, the formation of constellations, images of the brain, neurons, i.e., the micro- and nano-biological confines of the man, as well as three-dimensional diagrams, tables, frames, and other forms of representative use). The project focuses on the semiotic analysis of scientific discourses, aiming to examine the relationship between text and image in the several genres of literature, from the laboratory protocol to the vulgarisation manual. It is not our aim, in this research proposal, to pronounce on the technicality of visualisation means by technical considerations in areas such as the images of medical technology or photogrammetry etc.: semiotics, marked by the interdisciplinary vocation, conceives the objects produced by these disciplines - such as, among others, the schemas, the plants, the x-rays - as utterances that produce meaning. Thus, what the research aims to capture is the modalities of such meaning production. The technological images not only manifest the phenomena, but also show a device proceeding at the same time from the enunciative apparatus (in whose interior is the technical equipment) and from the genre of discourse, i.e., the communicational code in use. We will analyse the semiotic specificities of utterances produced by scientific image technologies, such as micro- and nano-photography, satellite photos, x-ray, scanning, PET scanning, and other medical imaging, x-ray diffraction, chromophotography in gaseous substance, ethnographic, zoological, botanical ‘field’ photos, and so on. We will study the transcodes that such technologies bring to images, from the collection of the phenomena to their interpretation, to discover if they can be described in semiotic terms.

Professor in charge: Waldir Beividas (


Intolerance, diversity, and discourse

Description: The project aims to analyse the linguistic-discursive procedures of different types of biased and intolerant discourses and the relationships that are established between these discourses and other social ones: political, grammatical, advertising, journalistic, literary, among others. This project is part of the research on the intolerant discourses we have developed with the support of a productivity scholarship from CNPq (researcher 1A) and in the Centre for the Study of Diversity, Conflict, and Intolerance - DIVERSITAS.

Professor in charge: Diana Luz Pessoa de Barros (


Tensive model and its contribution to the analysis of songs

Description: This project includes two integrated study fronts, one of theoretical nature, another of descriptive nature. In the first case, it seeks to explain how the inflections of tempo (fast/slow) and tone (unstressed/tonic), beside the variations of temporality (short/long) and of spatiality (closed/open) can be introduced at the fundamental level of generational path of meaning, and how these articulations instruct narrative, modal, and discursive levels, considered of surface by semiotics. In the second case, it must analyse the tensive oscillations that dose the degrees of ancestry and/or more (or less) of passion in every process of composition. These operations are part of the semiotic resources that awaken in the listener the impression of perfect compatibility between melody and lyrics.

Professor in charge: Luiz Augusto de Moraes Tatit (


For a Discursive Stylistic

Description: The questions regarding the discursive notion of style are the axes of this project, which is based on greimasian semiotics, as well as in their contemporary developments, which think about the sensitive as the tensive model. Thus, we aim to analyse the subject produced within the texts (immanence), in the extent that immanence turns to transcendence, whether this is the axiological world or the noticed world. Thereby, ethics and aesthetics are intersected in the description made in the sense generated in the texts, description that leads to recompose the image of who says to be deduced from an own model and appellant to say: the man, the style. From this point, we cover the boundaries between semiotics, rhetoric, and the phenomenological method of thought, as it deepens the questioning made about the subjects, who, immanent and transcendent to utterances, are analysed according to the system and the unpredictabilities that compose them, whereas the body is organised as an open structure. Then, we seek, by semiotic observation turned to discursive totalities concerning several spheres of communication, vectors of stylistic identity, which assume ethical and affective peculiarities in the relationship of the man with the world. We hold our thoughts and our analytic practice both in the concept of enunciative praxis, which returns the discourse to where it came from, i.e., the place of the social and historical conditions of the production of meaning, as we turn to the inference, in the texts, of peculiar modes of bringing to light the relationship established between the intelligible and sensitive in the style constitution as a body.

Professor in charge: Norma Discini de Campos (


Semiotics and Bakhtin

Description: To support the theoretical-methodological pattern of a discursive stylistic, which discusses the emergency conditions of the body of the subject in relation to the time-space that sustains it, we bring to light the thought of M. Bakhtin and the ‘Circle’ referred to him. Thus, if, for obtaining the enunciator subject as discursive identity, we start from a principle that considers the generation of meaning within the text, at the same time we turn to the ‘other,’ to the otherness constituent of identity, which is illuminated by the dialogic principle of language. Conceptually established in an immanence crossed by the transcendence from the depths of meaning generation, we question, from proposals made by Bakhtin and the ‘Circle,’ theoretical notions concerning the style of genre and authorial style, this obtained in the boundaries established with that, whereas each textual unit seen as a whole is considered comparatively or according to the dialogue established with what surrounds it. Upon such assumptions we seek to deepen the understanding regarding the relationship between the subject of enunciation and the subject of the utterance (roughly, ‘author and hero’), as well as the understanding concerning the relationship between the subject and the culture, the life forms and discursive practices. In this methodological-theoretical search triggered in relation to style as body of a subject in the world, at the same time we seek, in principles proposed by Bakhtin and the ‘Circle,’ subsidies that compose the notions relating to: carnavalisation and polyphony; chronotope and exotopy; sign and ideological refraction; the ‘discourse of life’ and the ‘discourse of art.’

Professor in charge: Norma Discini de Campos (