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Re: [xmca] FW: NYTimes.com: Does Your Language Shape How You Think?

This was a FASCINATING article that explores word meaning as a unit of
analysis and how it impacts our fundamental notions of epistemology.  The
description of how our most BASIC categories of "reality" such as notions of
"space" and "landscape" are constrained by HABITS of mind has implications
for Kant's basic categories of perception.  This article links up with
notions of the centrality of everyday "common sense" levels of shared
experience as constituative and constraining of our notions of
"reality". For example, the phenomena of expert abacus players calculating
without the use of the actual material abacus can be seen as particular
"habits" of mind.

I want to draw attention also to the fact that brain research has located
SPECIFIC regions of the brain as uniquely wired for recognizing "landscapes"
in a way that parallels the location of SPECIFIC regions of the brain
[mirror neurons] that recognize "social cognition" and other SPECIFIC
regions that recognize "facial recognition".  If the localized region of the
brain is damaged then the person looses the biological capacity to recognize
faces or landscapes [orientation in space]. I suspect that if the localized
landscape region of the was damaged both systems of mind  [egocentric and
coordinates] would be impossible to navigate.  This speaks to the hybrid
nature of mind.

Thinking about "objects" and "units" of analysis when reading this article
emphasizes HABITS of mind profoundly alter sensory, motor, perceptual,
motivational, intentional, identity formation,  self awareness and self
coherence, societal,  etc.  aspects of consciousness. [our
fundamental notions of ontology and epistemology] It leads one to wonder if
 the notions of BASIC constituents of mind such as space and time are
not essentialized and reified products but rather  habitual processes
constrained by biology AND  sociocultural AND historically constituted

I found this article well written and clearly articulated. Andy, the
 macrocosm of verbal thinking articlulated in this essay  is a fascinating
way to reflect on the interplay of "verbal thought" and "experience(s)"
as dialectical "units" of analysis. [or as David mentioned "currents" in
the river  of consciousness.]


The term "habits" [a term Dewey saw as central] in the phrase "habits of

On Sat, Aug 28, 2010 at 6:16 AM, smago <smago@uga.edu> wrote:

> http://www.nytimes.com/2010/08/29/magazine/29language-t.html?_r=1&adxnnl=1&emc=eta1&adxnnlx=1283000763-rynkTFk68LNetdkYjfAi8Q
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