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Re: [xmca] Wolves and Ilyenkov
I think you are misinterpreting Ilyenkov by focusing on this one sentence
and reading it in a particular way. What he seems to me to be saying is that
there are certain rules and processes (i.e. a logic) that need to be
followed to arrive at an adequate representation of the objective world and
that this logic is not dependent on the will or consciousness of humans i.e.
is objective not subjective.
Ilyenkov clearly differentiates himself from the idea that this logic is
simply a product of the self-movement of abstract thought independent of
human consciousness when, over the page, he states:
"From what we have said it will be clear that we understand thought
(thinking) as the ideal component of the real activity of social people
transforming both external nature and themselves by their labour.
"Dialectical logic is therefore *not only* a universal scheme of subjective
activity creatively transforming nature, but is also at the same time a
universal scheme of the changing of any natural or socio-historical material
in which this activity is fulfilled and with the objective requirements of
which it is always connected." (My emphasis)
Our ‘object,’ that is, our ‘subject matter’, is thought. Dialectical logic
aims to scientifically represent thought in its necessary concrete,
developmental, objective existences, including those aspects of these
existences that are objectively independent of will and consciousness.
evi: Our ‘object’ or ‘subject matter’ in general, and on the whole, is
thought, thinking; and dialectical Logic has as its aim the development of a
scientific representation of thought in those necessary moments, and
moreover in the necessary sequence, that do not in the least depend either
on our will or on our consciousness.
dk: Hmmm. You, sg, say that the goal of dialectical logic is to represent
thought as an objective fact, including its aspects that are involuntary and
unconscious. That is excellent and good, and I think it actually includes a
lot of what Haydi and Mike have been batting back and forth about the mental
life of animals. The problem is that YOU, evi, don't seem to be saying that
at all. Ilyenkov seems to be saying that our goal is the representation of
thinking (a process, and not, as he says later, a kind of mental organ). We
have to represent this process as an objective process. We do that by
representing it as a set of determined, definite steps and stages, like any
other objective process. We do that by representing it as determined,
definite, defined steps and stages WHICH ARE INDEPENDENT OF HUMAN WILL AND
CONSCIOUSNESS. For me, that is, dk, that is a step too far. That brings us
right back to the entirely pre-scientific era of philosophy.
Why would dialectical logic want a representation of thinking that is
independent of human will or human consciousness? That's the task of
religion, of metaphysics, and of teenage vampire literature.
Seoul National University of Education
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