Peter Pan's shadow and the relational matrix of the "i"

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9 Scopus citations


The linguistic sign "I" is commonly used in everyday conversation and analytical sessions. However, the ubiquity of the first-person singular pronoun does not mask the mysterious fact that, unlike other signs, "I" does not have a concrete signified. This missing signified is the focus of my study. In this article, I propose one way in which the meaning of the "I" is created and discovered through collateral experience with significant others. Moreover, by drawing on the work of C.S. Peirce, I present an analytical-linguistic technique for uncovering the relational matrix in which the "I" is embedded, and some of the transformations used to frame it. This technique is illustrated through an analysis of passages from Tennessee Williams's The Glass Menagerie.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-27
Number of pages13
Issue number176
StatePublished - 1 Aug 2009


  • "I"
  • Bion
  • Peirce theory of relations
  • Semiotics and psychology
  • The Glass Menagerie

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Language and Linguistics
  • Linguistics and Language
  • Literature and Literary Theory


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