The American Journal of Semiotics


John Deely, Editor
Christopher Morrissey, Managing Editor

The American Journal of Semiotics, the journal of the Semiotic Society of America, is a peer-reviewed research publication with an interdisciplinary focus on the general subject of signs and sign systems. The journal explores all communication and culture experienced as discourse codes, including events, messages, practices, and texts expressed and perceived as cultural, social, and natural subjects or objects. It publishes topical articles, response articles or comments, and critical reviews, and also provides a venue for unusually long manuscripts. There are no methodological restrictions but all contributions must combine a rigorous standard of scholarly research with the appropriate application of a semiotic theory and method relevant to the author’s chosen subject matter.

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Submission Guidelines

The Semiotic Society of America has its own style sheet for its publications. Authors should refer to the SSA Style Sheet when preparing manuscripts for submission. A brief version of the style sheet is also available for reference.

The principle unique to the SSA Style Sheet – the principle of the historical layering of sources – is explained below.

Format Requirements

  • Manuscripts are to be typed double-spaced throughout the text, notes and references, with at least 1 inch top, bottom, and right margins, using 11 point type size for text, 10 point for extracts (block quotes) and the list of References, and 9 point for notes. The typing is to be on one side of standard typing paper. Manuscripts may be divided as appropriate into sections with headings, not numbers alone. All pages of the manuscript are to have the last name of the author and the page number. Single quotes are to be used within double quotes; brackets within parentheses; single underlining or italics for emphasized expressions.
  • Line drawings (called “Figures” in the text) and photographs (glossies, not negatives; also called “Figures” in the text) are to be reproducible originals submitted on separate sheets, carefully numbered and labeled. Captions are to be typed on a separate sheet and placed at the end of the manuscript.
  • Tables should be numbered consecutively and titled, and must be referred to in the Text. Avoid referring to the ‘preceding’ or ‘following’ table, since the original position may be shifted in the final camera-ready preparation.
  • Notes should be kept to an absolute minimum, typed on a separate sheet of paper (double-spaced throughout) and included at the end of the text, but before the references. If a word processing program is used, footnoting is preferred.
  • References are to add to the current scientific practice the refinement of historical layering. That is to say, references should be cited in the text by giving, all within parentheses: the name of the author(s) and the year according to which the work cited from called the source work is properly located within the lifetime of the author who produced it, followed by a colon, a space, and the specific page number(s) of the actual volume according to which the citation is made the access volume when these are called for.

Principle of Historical Layering

Authors should pay explicit and systematic attention to this distinction between source works and access works in their manuscripts. This is all that is meant by the “principle of historical layering” and it is the essence of the SSA Style Sheet.

Reference List

Accordingly, in those cases where source work and access volume differ, the relation of the two including any discrepancy of dates and publishers, and mediator between source and access where there is the added discrepancy of language (i.e., the special case of translations), and whatever additional information or glosses seem useful is given in the list of references at the end of the manuscript. This list is to be arranged alphabetically by last name of authors, all in capital letters.

Submission Procedure

Manuscripts should be submitted by email to the managing editor:

Dr. Christopher Morrissey