Marketing Code-X

Substance vs. Style

Image for Substance vs. Style

The CODE-X series catalogs a vast codex of source codes (aka “signs”) extracted from past audits.

The object of study in semiotics is not the signs but rather a general theory of signification; the goal of each “audit” is to build a model demonstrating how meaning is produced and received within a category or cultural territory. Signs on their own, therefore, only become truly revelatory and useful once we’ve sorted them into thematic complexes, and the complexes into codes, and the codes into a meaning map. We call this process “thick description”; the Code-X series is thin description.

SUBSTANCE VS. STYLE” NORM: Contemporary pseudo-masculinity is overly focused on unimportant, surface aspects..

Carhartt “Madison” commercial

SUBSTANCE VS. STYLE” FORMS: Construction workers, fire fighters, others who are naturally manly and don’t need to work at it. Admiring/scornful. “Fire fighter strong!” “These guys don’t need spin class.”

Carhartt “Madison” commercial

From a 2018 study of the Strong & Stoic space — defined as doing your duty, toughing it out, self-sacrificing, uncomplaining.

Tags: CODE-X, Spirit of the West