Catherine Dodd Corona

Frow vs. Culler

Progymnasmata: Comparison

Frow’s dissection of Cullers ideas on semiotics links into the illusion of free will. Culler argues that reality is always subjective and the judgment of that reality is already predetermined, because there is no way to break preconceived assumptions. Culler shows that this idea is emphasized through the lens of tourism. He argues that for example blue jeans will never just be blue jeans. They will always represent an assumption made by society. Weather that be casualness in western culture or an example of western culture in nonwestern societies. Culler explains how this subjectivity creates authenticity. It puts an aesthetic or certain “vibe” to a place or culture. Frow builds on this to argue that trying to label and determine what the semiotics of a certain place then diminishes its authenticity. Looking through the lens of tourism it shows people cannot travel and find authenticity in a certain place because of the semiotics or original assumptions of that destination. Because of semiotics any destination is already full of judgements, meaning it will never truly be authentic. This leads into the idea of free will. A tourist may think they are immersing themselves into a certain culture when really they are immersing themselves in a predetermined view of that place based on that tourists assumptions.

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