[xmca] re: LCA Vygotsky, Halliday and Bernstein

From: Gordon Wells (gwells@ucsc.edu)
Date: Fri Jul 01 2005 - 19:32:14 PDT


I enjoyed reading your paper on Vygotsky and Bernstein. I wonder how
they'd have got on if they'd been able to engage in discussion in
real time! I agree with your qualifications about Vygotsky's view of
language, in particular his focus on 'word' as the unit of meaning,
particularly in relation to the semiotic mediation that enculturates
the young language learner. I also agree with your point about
Vygotsky's focus on the ideational metafunction at the expense of the
interpersonal. This is surprising in a way as he places considerable
importance on the interdependence of cognition and affect, where the
latter, both initially and probably throughout our lives, most
frequently arises in the context of interpersonal interaction. If I
recollect correctly, Lemke makes the point that the interpersonal
function encompasses an attitudinal orientation to the interlocutor
which has a variety of lexicogrammatical realizations.

As Phil added in his p.s., I'm going to be away from early next week,
making a camping trip to explore part of Northern California. But
I'll be back by the end of the week and will catch up on the

I'm glad that you've become involved in this listserv. We shall
benefit from your perspective on activity theory as well as on


Gordon Wells
Dept of Education,		http://education.ucsc.edu/faculty/gwells
UC Santa Cruz.

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