Institute of General Semantics

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The Institute of General Semantics (IGS) is a not-for-profit corporation established in 1938 by Alfred Korzybski, to support research and publication on the topic of General Semantics. The Institute publishes Korzybski's writings, including the seminal text Science & Sanity, and books by other authors who have studied or taught general semantics, such as Robert Pula, Irving J. Lee, Wendell Johnson, and Stuart Chase. Every year since 1952, it has sponsored the Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecture, with presenters from a broad range of disciplines, from science to medicine to entertainment, including names like actor Steve Allen, psychologist Albert Ellis, scientist and visionary R. Buckminster Fuller, linguist Allen Walker Read, and philosopher F. S. C. Northrop. The Institute offers periodic seminars, workshops and conferences and is headquartered in New York City.

The IGS is closely affiliated with GS groups around the globe, including the Australian General Semantics Society.

The Institute of General Semantics publishes:

  • ETC: A Review of General Semantics, a quarterly journal printed since 1943, distributed to IGS members and subscribed to by over 350 libraries around the world.
  • Numerous books, CDs and DVDs on general semantics.

Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecture[edit]

The Alfred Korzybski Memorial Lecture (AKML) series was begun in 1952. It is an annual event sponsored by the Institute of General Semantics in honor of Alfred Korzybski. Each year the Institute invites some prominent scholar or otherwise notable individual to give the lecture. Lecturers have included inventor R. Buckminster Fuller, physicist James A. Van Allen, entertainer Steve Allen, Gregory Bateson, Neil Postman and Ashley Montagu. The only person to give the lecture more than once was surgeon Russell Meyers, in 1958 and 1985.

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