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Affective semiosis is a kind of picturing the world shaping it as engaging with the subject. We do not feel an object as bad, rather as bad-with-me/us. Such an addressivity is already entailed in the Kleinian model of affective semiosis of the absent mother, who is not symbolized as a recognition of a fact, but as a (subjective) object endowed with a destructive agency against the person who is symbolizing. And it is also evident in the child’s way of beating and saying “bad” to the table she has just run into.
Connecting this statement to the ones provided in the previous paragraphs, we can add that such addressivity Outlines of a Psychoanalytically Informed Cultural Psychology 29 is signified and shaped through and in the terms of embodied meaning, that is, of hedonic values that can be considered the first form of meaningfulness, therefore of subjective mental life. THE ROLE OF AFFECTIVE SEMIOSIS IN SENSE-MAKING Having defined our model of affective semiosis, we can now address the focal aim of our contribution: the conceptualization of the role played by affects in sense-making.
This is an evident implication of reification. As a matter of fact, asserting that affective semiosis generates the object that it connotes is equivalent to saying that affective semiosis always and only predicates presences. This comes back to Freud’s seminal observation about the absence of negation in dream work (Freud, 1900/1953) as well as to Klein’s model of the infant’s affective transformation of the experience of the mother’s absence into a present persecutory object. Anthropomorphization The objects generated by affective semiosis as mentally salient are not discrete pieces of the reality (“objects” in the ordinary sense).