Theodoor Jacob van Leeuwen

Theodoor Jacob van Leeuwen
University of Southern Denmark | SDU · Department of Language and Communication

PhD

About

117
Publications
80,601
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15,070
Citations
Citations since 2016
28 Research Items
9186 Citations
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201620172018201920202021202202004006008001,0001,2001,400
201620172018201920202021202202004006008001,0001,2001,400
201620172018201920202021202202004006008001,0001,2001,400
Introduction

Publications

Publications (117)
Chapter
Full-text available
This chapter argues that, even if this aspect of their practice is undervalued and overlooked, many artists conduct valuable research into materials and semiotic technologies. Among many examples are Talking Heads front man David Byrne, abstract expressionist painter Barnett Newman and sculptor jean Tinguely, whose experiments push at the boundarie...
Book
This book examines the materiality of writing. It adopts a multimodal approach to argue that writing as we know it is only a small part of the myriad gestures we make, practices we engage in, and media we use in the process of trace-making. Taking a broad view of the act of writing, the volume features contributions from both established and up-and...
Article
This paper opens by proposing a model for the holistic study of design software that emphasises user operations. It then examines the affordances of Explain Everything, a popular interactive whiteboard software, for animating concepts that play a crucial role in the Australian Year 7–10 physics curriculum. Building on earlier work on animation by L...
Article
This paper examines digitally mediated multimodal dialogue on social media in relation to intersections between semiotic technology and social communication. In the paper, the theoretical and methodological approach to multimodal social media dialogue explores the interdependence between the design and the use of social media, showing how social me...
Article
This article addresses the need for critical approaches to social media by bridging the focus on language and other semiotic resources that characterises discourse studies with the broader perspective on social media as social, cultural, economic and technological constructs that dominates media and cultural studies. Specifically, we propose a mode...
Article
Full-text available
https://tidsskrift.dk/mediekultur/article/view/25012/155224 ||| Shopping is one of the many everyday activities that are increasingly digitally remediated. This not only transforms the high streets of our villages and towns, but also the way customers and retailers interact, the way retailers present goods to customers, the way customers can examin...
Article
In everyday life it is now common to find our actions linked to sound, especially using technology, such as when we use mobile devices, or operate more recently manufactured cars, technology in the workplace or simply in an elevator. While we may attend little to these noises, like any semiotic resource, they can communicate very specific meanings...
Article
Full-text available
This journal’s editorial statement is clear that political discourse should be studied not only as regards parliamentary type politics. In this introduction we argue precisely for the need to pay increasing attention to the way that political ideologies are infused into culture more widely, in entertainments media, software, administrative processe...
Article
Full-text available
All interviews (of people named above) are available at available at http://figureground.org/ The first in this series of FigureGround Interviews with wonderful scholars and creators was: Professor Theo van Leeuwen who is one of the top international researchers in multimodal social semiotics, having written many books and articles on critical d...
Article
This paper traces the development of a new semiotic mode, kinetic typography. Kinetic typography began with the experiments of filmmakers like Len Lye and Norman McLaren. Later, film title designers like Saul Bass and Pablo Ferro drew on the shapes of letters with inventive metaphors - serifs, for instance could make letters walk, because they can...
Book
Full-text available
This book is presents various studies of verbal and multimodal communication. The specific focus of the book is the relationship between text and context, in relation to communication through various modes such as sound, music, images, logos and verbal language. Among the contributors are several Scandinavian researchers, as well as several interna...
Article
In this paper, we propose a social semiotic approach to studying PowerPoint in university classrooms. Our approach is centred on two premises: (1) PowerPoint is a semiotic technology that can be integrated into the pedagogical discourse of classrooms, and (2) PowerPoint technology encompasses three interrelated dimensions of social semiotic practic...
Article
The ubiquitous software PowerPoint has significant influence on evaluations of professional and academic success, and has attracted considerable attention from both social commentators and researchers in various fields. Existing research on PowerPoint considers the software, slideshows created with it, and PowerPoint-supported presentations in isol...
Article
Full-text available
With the unprecedented rise in the use of visuals, and its undeniable omnipresence in organizational contexts, as well as in the individual's everyday life, organization and management science has recently started to pay closer attention to the to date under-theorized “visual mode” of discourse and meaning construction. Building primarily on insigh...
Article
This article presents a reading of David Byrne's Envisioning Emotional Epistemological Information, an art work created with MicroSoft's presentation software PowerPoint, as an instance of creative research on semiotics and semiotic technology. It reveals commonalities and differences between Byrne's ideas about PowerPoint and related ideas from li...
Article
Full-text available
Ubiquitous software such as PowerPoint has contributed to making layout an important semiotic resource in everyday professional communication. Drawing on developments in the visual arts, graphic design, and social semiotics, this paper presents two central and complementary principles for layout design and analysis: the grid and composition. These...
Chapter
In its broadest sense, the term “software“ contrasts to “hardware“ and applies to any computer features that cannot be physically manipulated. This includes features invisible to the average computer user such as algorithms, text files written by programmers in source code, and their translations into computer-executable, binary, code.Keywords:mult...
Chapter
The term “critical analysis of multimodal discourse” suggests a merger of two distinct fields of applied linguistics: critical discourse analysis and multimodality. At present it cannot be said that such a merger has taken place. Unlike critical discourse analysis and multimodality, the “critical analysis of multimodal discourse” is not—or not yet—...
Chapter
Rhythm plays a crucial role in creating cohesion and meaningful structure in multimodal texts and communicative events that unfold over time.Keywords:metre;multimodality;rhythm
Article
This paper argues that, contrary to what many musicologists and classical musicians have maintained, music can, and should, be analysed as discourse. It then surveys a number of approaches to the critical analysis of musical discourse and applies these approaches to a range of examples, including sonatas, advertising jingles and news signature tune...
Article
The term 'texture' is often applied beyond the tactile, to describe visual and aural qualities. While tactile, visual and aural texture have been studied separately in various fields, the relationships between them remain largely unexplored. To address this gap, this article proposes parameters for describing tactile surface texture and visual text...
Article
The paper discusses three aspects of the relation between discourse and technology. The first is the influence of new communication technologies on the agenda of linguistics and discourse analysis. The beginning of radio broadcasting led to new theories of intonation and the beginning of television created an interest in linguistically inspired app...
Article
Full-text available
After an introduction on the recent history of academic publishing in non-linear media, the article compares two versions of an academic publication by the American sociologist David Theo Goldberg. The two versions deal with the same subject matter, but one is a traditional scholarly article, the other published in an online journal in a non-linear...
Chapter
IntroductionNarrative AdaptationTranslating Narrative and DialogueMulti-modalityConclusion References
Article
Full-text available
Linguagem em (Dis)curso-LemD, Tubarão, v. 4, n.esp, p. 11-33, 2004 1 INTRODUÇÃO Brinquedos são objetos semióticos que são produzidos e distribuídos globalmente por poderosas empresas multinacionais. Freqüentemente, transmitem mensagens para as crianças sobre o mundo social em que elas vivem. São produzidos como um sistema, que permite distinções qu...
Article
Full-text available
1. A brief history of the European landscape Jan van Eyck (c.1437) The Virgin with Chancellor Rolin (detail). Copyright © 2002-2009 (Creative Commons) The poet and scholar Petrarch was the first European to climb a mountain for no other reason than to enjoy the view, in 1336. But in fact he did not enjoy the experience. In a letter, he reported fee...
Article
Full-text available
This lecture discusses the concept of lifestyle, which emerged in the field of marketing in the 1970s, as a new, and increasingly pervasive, discourse of identity cutting through older 'demographic' discourses. Distributed by mediated experts and role models, and realized through the semiotics of 'composites of connotation', it redraws the oppositi...
Article
This article looks at toys for very small children, an object of study that has been pursued in psychoanalysis (by Freud and Erikson, for example), but all too infrequently in semiotics. Specifically, it analyzes the social roles and identities called into play by the highly successful Playmobil figurines. In the Hallidayan tradition, the investiga...
Chapter
This chapter introduces "social actor analysis," a method of discourse analysis developed in the context of Critical Discourse Analysis (cf. Renkema, 2004: 282-285). After introducing Critical Discourse Analysis and clarifying its aims and methods with reference to a classic study by Tony Trew (1979), the chapter explains Social Actor Theory as a s...
Article
This article discusses two crucial issues in the social semiotics of visual communication. The first is the move from accounts of specific semiotic modes towards an integrated multimodal approach to visual communication in which the analysis of images becomes less central than the analysis of semiotic resources such as composition, movement and col...
Book
Building on Bernstein's concept of recontextualization, Foucault's theory of discourse, Halliday's systemic-functional linguistics and Martin's theory of activity sequences, this book defines discourses as frameworks for the interpretation of reality and presents detailed and explicit methods for reconstructing these frameworks through text analysi...
Chapter
In this chapter we focus on the origins of two powerful ‘models of identity’, two powerful ways of constructing ‘identity’. One is constructed and propagated by nation-states, the other by global corporations and their agents. Both models involve classifications which not only have material effects in people’s lives, but also provide them with reso...
Article
Experimenting with page layout as a discursive mode, this visual essay offers a brief history of the idea of immersion. It then pays particular attention to the role of sound in immersive experience.
Article
Featuring a wide range of exercises, examples, and images, this textbook provides a practical way of analyzing the discourses of the global media industries. Building on a comprehensive introduction to the history and theory of global media communication, specific case studies of lifestyle and entertainment media are explored with examples from fil...
Article
This article outlines a social semiotic approach to analysing the ideational, interpersonal and textual meaning potentials of letter forms, drawing on Jakobson's distinctive feature analysis and Lakoff and Johnson's theory of experiential metaphor. Distinctive features are recognized and applied to the analysis of examples: weight, expansion, slope...
Article
The Vietnam News is an English language daily newspaper produced on behalf of the Vietnamese Government, as part of its market reform policies. Drawing on an analysis of 100 translations from the Vietnamese press and their rewrites by the paper's foreign sub-editors, as well as on interviews with sub-editors and journalist-translators working at th...
Article
This paper investigates the representation of female identity and practice in the U.K., Dutch, German, Spanish, Greek, Finnish, Indian and Taiwanese versions of Cosmopolitan magazine. It shows how a ‘problem–solution’ discourse schema underlies a range of articles that do not all use a problem–solution genre. While this schema is clearly global and...
Article
The papers in this issue were first presented at a meeting of critical discourse analysts, held at the University of Birmingham in April 1999. Critical discourse analysts are interested in the processes and products of discourse and their impact on social practices. Although its theoretical framework is eclectic and interdisciplinary, critical disc...
Article
This paper presents a semiotic analysis of a key cultural artefact, the teddy bear. After introducing the iconography of the teddy bear, it analyses different kinds of stories to show how teddy bears are endowed with meaning in everyday life: stories from children's books, reminiscences by adults about their childhood teddy bears, and children's ac...
Article
Full-text available
This article presents a brief review of several approaches of 'grammar', as the basis for a discussion of culturally produced regularities in the uses of colour; that is, the possibility of extending the use of 'grammar' to colour as a communicational resource. Colour is discussed as a semiotic resource - a mode, which, like other modes, is multifu...
Article
This article deals with the discursive construction of unemployment in Austria, through an analysis of speeches by former Chancellor Klima and reports in the Austrian press. It is a companion to an earlier paper investigating the same issues in the UK. Both deal with left-wing governments who, in the European context, are proposing economic change...
Article
Photography has a long history of (de-)legitimation of wars. In this paper we examine the visual rhetoric of two newspapers, the British Guardian and the Polish Gazeta Wyborcza in their representation of the Palestinian-Israeli war in October 2000. Although both newspapers have access to the same (agency) photographs, their images differ. Both pape...
Article
The material qualities and kinetic possibilities and limitations of toys and other objects for small children create a specific cultural microcosm. Within the confines of this environment, as facilitated and mediated by parents or other carers, children explore and develop their cognitive and motor abilities, and become specific kinds of socio-cult...
Article
Full-text available
Austrian immigration authorities frequently reject the family reunion applications of immigrant workers. They justify their decisions not only on legal grounds but also on the basis of their own often prejudiced judgements of the applicants' ability to `integrate' into Austrian society. A discourse-historical method is combined with systemic-functi...
Chapter
Every semiotic mode can create relations between what is being presented or represented and the receiver, the reader or viewer or listener of the message. Images do it through two slightly different and complementary ways of spatial positioning, size of frame and perspective.
Chapter
Linguists have pointed out that the linguistic representation of a given state of affairs always also involves assigning a degree of truth to that representation. The previous sentence, for example, was assigned a high degree of truth (because of the word always), but I could also have said ‘that the linguistic representation of some state of affai...
Chapter
The Belgian linguist Jef Verschueren (1985) lists some 650 different speech acts, ‘things people do with words’, from ‘abandon’ to ‘zip one’s lip’. Such a list has not been compiled for ‘sound acts’, but that is not because we do not do things with sound. With sound we announce our presence, hail, warn, call for help, lull to sleep, comfort, and mu...

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Projects

Projects (3)
Project
Social semiotic approach to understanding software and mobile applications
Archived project
Increasingly many everyday social practices are digitally ‘resemiotised’, that is, adapted and transformed to suit online modes of communication. So all-encompassing is this tendency in contemporary society, and so fundamental is the change for humans in this digital age that the term ‘the digital turn’ has been coined. In this project we will investigate this issue through a comparative study of online and face-to-face shopping. Shopping is a crucial case for the study of digital resemiotisation, not only because the fierce competition among online retailers constantly pushes semiotic innovation, making it an extremely rich case in terms of the semiotic resources at play, but also because it can be argued that all online practices are ultimately modeled on the principles of the market, which positions us as consumers rather than as citizens or students or patients, and in which consumer choice and consumer satisfaction are the central concerns, while at the same time cost must be minimised and profits maximised. The project is departing from the following problem statement: How is shopping resemiotised when it moves from face-to-face buying/ selling encounters to online environments, and what consequences does this have for customers? This problem statement can be expanded into four interrelated research questions: (i) How do buying/selling encounters unfold in online and face-to-face shopping environments?, (ii) How is the interaction between buyers and sellers multimodally realized in these different environments?, (iii) what skills do buyers and sellers need in each of these forms of shopping?, and (iv) which theoretical and methodological developments are needed to capture this? These questions will be answered through a combined lab and field based study integrating multimodal social semiotics and multimodal conversation analysis. Findings from studying shopping with these approaches will be related to insights from marketing studies in social science, so spearheading new bridges between different approaches to the study of (online) shopping.