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RE: [xmca] Valsiner and pseudoconcepts

Dear Steve, so sorry I see that in both copies of Valsiner (Andy's and mine)
the two pages are missing. I shall do this tomorrow 15th morning and send


-----Original Message-----
From: xmca-bounces@weber.ucsd.edu [mailto:xmca-bounces@weber.ucsd.edu] On
Behalf Of Steve Gabosch
Sent: 13 August 2010 22:12
To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
Subject: Re: [xmca] Valsiner and pseudoconcepts

That's an interesting angle, Michael.  I'll toss this out for those  
who have been reading on this more recently - how does Vygotsky relate  
magical thinking to syncretic, complexive, pseudoconceptual and  
systematic-conceptual thinking?  And how does magical thinking fit in  
with his thoughts on imaginative and creative thinking?  I'd love a  
summary of how Vygotsky puts all those together ...

- Steve

On Aug 13, 2010, at 12:16 PM, Michael Glassman wrote:

> Steve,
> I think psedo-concept having to do with level 4 might be tied to  
> Valsiner's example of magic - black magic and the way that a belief  
> in black magic can have enough power to actually lead someone to die  
> (people have been known to die because they thought that spells were  
> cast on them).  Valsiner seems to equate the pseudoconcpet then with  
> magical thinking - perhaps Levy-Bruhl's ideas on magical thinking.   
> Although he doesn't seem to address the idea from a developmental  
> standpoint the way that Piaget does (we escape magical thinking  
> through a process of decentration).  From what I've read Valsiner  
> seems to be thinking that pseudoconcepts - and I am thinking he  
> believes them to be part of a larger category will stay with us a  
> whole lifetime and have greater power and sway in many concepts and  
> scientific concepts.  To make a modern point, the idea that because  
> it snows during the winter must mean global warming is a hoax is I  
> guess what Valsiner would consider a level 4 concept.  But it has a  
> strong enough hold on people that they are willing to put future  
> generatoins in grave danger based on this, and they cannot be swayed  
> by scientific concepts.
> I'm sure it's more complicated than that - if it's not it should be.
> But I am left with a question, who is Vygotsky closer to then,  
> Piaget or Valsiner?
> Michael
> ________________________________
> From: xmca-bounces@weber.ucsd.edu on behalf of Steve Gabosch
> Sent: Fri 8/13/2010 2:38 PM
> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> Subject: Re: [xmca] Valsiner and pseudoconcepts
> Larry, I'm following these discussions, too, at least sketchily.  I'm
> still hoping someone has pages 288-289 of that Valsiner chapter where
> he discusses abduction.  As for his levels of emotional thinking, I
> find Valsiner's concept of "overgeneralizing feeling fields" thought-
> provoking.  I don't always find Valsiner's **explanations** well-
> aligned, insofar as he tries to trace the sociocultural **causes** of
> things - my take on him is he bends the stick way over toward a very
> strong one-sided subjectivist perspective - but his descriptions are
> often very helpful, he raises a lot of interesting ideas and insights,
> and addresses a lot of very important questions (for CHAT) with very
> high scholarship.  He is usually a clear and excellent writer, and he
> always has a bundle of provocative ideas to offer.  I appreciate his
> work and learn from him.  I notice he cites Anna Wierzbicka, who Mike
> pointed me to a few years back.  Wierzbicka studied how emotions are
> described in many different languages and reports on some very
> interesting patterns.  It is sort of like the study of human facial
> expressions - there is so much there for CHAT to work with - in both
> areas, there appear to be some universal human behavioral patterns
> which beg to be explained from a CHAT perspective as to why they are
> true - or why they are not as they appear.  I would so appreciate some
> people in CHAT writing some books on those questions!  So much to
> learn.  However, on the question that got some of this discussion
> started - I am still not grasping why Valsiner puts pseudoconcepts in
> his level 4.  Anyone figured that out?
> - Steve
> On Aug 13, 2010, at 10:05 AM, Larry Purss wrote:
>> Paula
>> Thank you for this article explaining Valsiner's 4 levels. I also
>> find it a
>> very interesting framework for trying to understand emotions.
>> I'm also aware of Andy's comments that Valsner is "merely"
>> articulating a
>> "cognitive perspective" of generalization/abstraction and am trying  
>> to
>> remain reflective.
>> What I particularly find interesting is the recognition that at the
>> "higher"
>> 4th level of generalization the process of differentiation and
>> reflection of
>> affect becomes DE-differentiated and abstracted [and implicit]
>> This "higher" level is the level of VALUES which have an IMPLICIT
>> constraining determination on the emergence and generation of affect
>> and
>> meaning.  This model also offers an explanation of why it is so
>> difficult to
>> have a DIALOGUE about level 2 emotions and meanings. At the level 4
>> de-differentiation of value constructions persons have a
>> generalized/abstracted orientation which is "just a feeling" which is
>> difficult to put into words and articulate.
>> I'm reading the other articles within this thread, but I'm hoping
>> Andy and
>> others add their thoughts on Valsiner.  His writings are helping me  
>> to
>> understand abduction, pseudoconcepts, and stage/layer accounts of
>> development.  His perspective also has significant implications for
>> how we
>> "observe" or "recognize" our relations with others.
>> Larry
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