The Hellenic Semiotic Society and its History

The Hellenic Semiotic Society was founded in 1978 at the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, with the aim of encouraging the propagation of semiotics in Greece. Its members are mainly from the academic community, and many of them have published in recognized international scientific journals and participated in international semiotic events. The Society is a member of the International Association of Semiotic Societies and collaborates closely with the Southeast European Center for Semiotic Studies at the New Bulgarian University of Sofia (http://www.nbu.bg/index.php?l=444) and the Cyprus Semiotics Association (http://www.cyprus-semiotics.com).

The Greek direction in socio-semiotic research has been noted in the international bibliography as the “Greek School” or the “School of Thessaloniki”, and grouped with the “Anglo-Australian School”, the “School of Bari”, the “Finnish School”, the “School of Tartu” and the “School of Vienna” (see Paul Cobley & Anti Randviir, 2009, “Introduction: What is Sociosemiotics?” Semiotica 173 (1/4): 1-39).

The Society has organised several conferences and symposia, on the national or international level, with the participation of distinguished Greek and foreign speakers. It has reached a wide audience through its published volumes of conference proceedings, mainly in Greek but sometimes with contributions in English or French:

  • Semiotics and Society (in Greek; Athens: Odysseas, 1980)
  • Εspace et sémiotique (special issue of the journal Espaces et Sociétés, 1985)
  • The Dynamics of Signs (in Greek; Thessaloniki: Paratiritis, 1986)
  • Man the Sign-Maker (in Greek; Thessaloniki, Paratiritis, 1996)
  • Semiotics and Education (in Greek; Thessaloniki, Paratiritis, 1996)
  • The Life of Signs (in Greek; Thessaloniki: Paratiritis, 1996)
  • Semiotics and Culture (in Greek; Thessaloniki: Paratiritis, 2001)
  • Semiotic Systems and Communication: Action, Reaction, Situation and Change (in Greek; Thessaloniki: Paratiritis, 2004)
  • Interculturalism, Globalisation and Identities (in Greek; Athens: Gutenberg, 2008)
  • Semiotics and (Ideo)logies: Borders, Regions, Diasporas (in Greek; Thessaloniki: University Studio Press, 2011).
  • Semiotics and Hermeneutics of the Everyday (Cambridge: Cambridge Scholars Publishing, 2015)
  • Changing Worlds and Signs of the Times (electronic edition). Volos: Thessaly University Press, 2015)

Semiotics is taught at Greek universities and technical universities on the undergraduate and postgraduate level, generally not as an autonomous degree-granting program but as part of programs of study in the human sciences, education, architecture and photography. Since 2007, the School of Education of the University of Western Macedonia offers a postgraduate program in semiotics.