[percy-l] The Naked Ape's Triadic Threshold

robert.g.eckert at us.army.mil robert.g.eckert at us.army.mil
Sat May 5 20:42:48 EDT 2007

John Harvey asks:

> How does Percy explicitly suggest that symbol use is related to 
> "the 
> triadic threshold?" Or, are there secondary sources for this 
> connection? In either case, I would appreciate knowing where I can 
> get more information on these ideas.

I'm going on memory here-- I'm pretty sure "A Semiotic Primer of the Self" speaks to this connection. 

The origin of symbol use is identical to the crossing of the triadic threshold. At some point our brain evolved the ability to synthesize the triadic relation between signifier and signified, linguistic signs and their referents. At that point we evolved a new mode of being.

I tried dealing with this subject in "Walker Percy and the Mind/Body Problem'  June 1999 International Philosophical Quarterly. [shameless self-promotion] Pretty naive writing on subjects I didn't really understand.

I know Percy deals with the subject in essays in The Message in the Bottle also.

This triadic threshold question is THE question. I have to think that understanding where we come from will help us know where we are going.

Spc Robert Eckert
172 Chemical Corp
Ft. Riley, Kansas 66442 

More information about the Percy-L mailing list