in Secondary Research: Case Studies, and Literature Review

Codexes, boundaries, making meaning

So i’ve been looking into codex as a possible final form of my fyp. In a way, developing from the idea of the codex as a dictionary, a way of classification of things and the way in which we should classify things led me to think about boundaries, or how do we dissect/ make sense of the world or specifically space.

I was reading up on ‘Islands of meaning’ by Eviatar Zerubavel (1991) and found several ideas worth mentioning.

Things assume a distinctive identity only through being differentiated from other things, and their meaning is always a function of the particular mental compartment in which we place them. Examining how we draw lines will therefore reveal how we give meaning to our environment as well as to ourselves.

Making sense of the physical space around us through our mental understanding.

We transform the natural world into a social one by carving out of it mental chunks we then treat as if they were discrete, totally detached from their surroundings. The way we mark off islands of property is but one example of the general process by which we create meaningful social entities.

Examining spaces.

The perception of supposedly insular chunks of space is probably the most fundamental manifestation of how we divide reality into islands of meaning. Examining how we partition space, therefore, is an ideal way to start exploring how we partition our social world.