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Philosophical Perspectives on Depiction$
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Catharine Abell and Katerina Bantinaki

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780199585960

Published to Oxford Scholarship Online: September 2010

DOI: 10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199585960.001.0001

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Pictorial Diversity

Pictorial Diversity

(p.25) 1 Pictorial Diversity
Philosophical Perspectives on Depiction

John Kulvicki (Contributor Webpage)

Oxford University Press

There are undeniably many ways of depicting things, but it is unclear what the diversity of depictive representational systems consists in. What is a way of depicting something, and how many ways of depicting things are there? Pictorial diversity starts to seem interesting and confusing when one tries to fix a picture's content while varying its surface features, or vice versa. This chapter seeks to explain what is at issue in discussing pictorial diversity and to introduce two tools for understanding it: the notions of syntactic competition and semantic competition. The fact that pictures compete neither syntactically nor semantically places important constraints on picture interpretation.

Keywords:   depiction, representational system, syntactic competition, semantic competition, interpretation

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