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n. (context philosophy English) The quality or state of being indexical


In linguistics and in philosophy of language, an indexical behavior or utterance points to (or indicates) some state of affairs. For example, I refers to whoever is speaking; now refers to the time at which that word is uttered; and here refers to the place of utterance. For Charles Sanders Peirce, indexicality is one of three sign modalities (see further down), and is a phenomenon far broader than language; that which, independently of interpretation, points to something – such as smoke (an index of fire) or a pointing finger – works indexically for interpretation. Social indexicality in the human realm has been regarded as including any sign (clothing, speech variety, table manners) that points to, and helps create, social identity.