Dr. Phil Jones’ professional output

Looking through, looking into, and looking at the book: The materiality of message and medium.

Article – Published 1st Jan 11

The relationship between material and message with respect to books has been a recurring source of discussion in graphic design. Such discussion punctuates the last 100 years: with divergent thoughts on the material resources of the book ranging from considering them as: inert, equivalent to a neutral substrate that carries an imprinted message, to understanding them as a set of independently meaningful material properties possessed by the physical artifact. This article reviews such different appreciations of books and the relationship between materiality and meaning-making and reassesses them using a theoretical framework derived from cognitive linguistics and relevance theory. It suggests that both dematerialized and materialized understandings inaccurately describe the ways that meaning is made from books, and advances an account based on attention, iconicity and relevance to describe the background processing that results in dematerialized and materialized understandings at the phenomenological level.

Publication details

Publication status Published
Refereed 1
Publication title Book 2.0
Publishers name Intellect Journals
Volume 1:2
Identification number 10.1386/btwo.1.2.255_1
Number of pages 16
Page range 255–271
ISSN 2042-8022