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Re: [xmca] Fwd: playzone


Thanks for pointing out that my posts were not being directed to the CHAT
community.  I've included CHAT in this response.

D. Hutto also has another book that is NOT edited but focuses on his
hermeneutical narrative approach to folk psychology.  I don't have the
background to give an in depth answer to Computational models of cognition
or developing useable computer models.  What is interesting to me is the
notion that "thoughts" [and propositional structures] are "meaningful" WHEN
RESPONDED to. If the communication  goes unaddressed then their is no
meaning.  Therefore notions of "intentionality" and its close cousin
"agency" are fundamentally [figure & ground] dialogical & perspectival and

When you mention the contrasts between CHAT and SCT theory I'm not sure
where my thoughts fit in except that Jack Martin's edited book "The
sociocultural turn in Psychology" is attempting to link notions from CHAT
with dialogical, hermeneutical, and discursive traditions.  The article you
posted by Giyoo Hatano also takes this more ecumenical approach when he

"I also believe that if we want to establish a generally acceptable
conception or theory of knowledge acquisition there should be much more
dialogue (or polilogue) among theories or research programs. This practice
may lead us to attempt to strengthen one theory by incorporating insights
from another, which is sometimes considered 'problematic'.... There is no
reason why Vygotskians cannot incorporate insights from other schools"

Mike, I believe Hutto's edited volume is just such an exercise in
socio-cultural theory - focused at the dialogical level - that recognizes
theory as polilogue. Neo-Piagetians [socio-constructivist] and neo-Meadians,
and the social representation extensions of Moscovici [ie Ivana Markova &
Sandra Jovchelovitch] are all exploring similar themes.  Gadamer's
hermeneutical approach and Lakoff and Johnson's concept of metaphor "as
thought" also point to issues of addressivity and RESPONSE as fundamental
[some would call it ontological] issues of epistemology.


On Sun, Dec 5, 2010 at 10:38 AM, mike cole <lchcmike@gmail.com> wrote:

> I found your description of Hutto's book on folk psychology really
> interesting, Larry. I think Hobson's ideas have a lot to recommend them but
> had not thought about them in terms of computational models.
> With regard to play and morality. Somehow, your note got me thinking about
> the moral implications of "in the beginning was the deed" (dewey, bakhtin,
> vygotsky, ...... (must be hegel back there some where?) versus "in the
> beginning was the word" (various kinds of nativists, stimulus-response
> theorists, and I do not know who else).
> Locally, issues of how whether it is possible and how to create useable
> computer models of non-linear, open, dynamic systems, which we take to be a
> fundamental characteristic off dialogical systems, are way up our list of
> attention getters. We believe there are other ways to study artificial
> intelligence other than their embodiment in networks of silicon. A
> discussion for a different time/thread.
> mike
> PS-- only sent to me? End of quarter busy blues here.
> mike
> On Tue, Nov 30, 2010 at 9:59 PM, Larry Purss <lpscholar2@gmail.com> wrote:
>> Hi Mike
>> I don't have the requisite background to answer your question on the
>> centrality of computational theory. However I want to make reference to a
>> book edited by Daniel Hutto,  "Folk Psychology Revisited" that may speak to
>> computational theory.  In Hutto's introduction to the book he critiques the
>> historical roots of the "received view" of our common sense notions of folk
>> psychology.
>> Hutto suggests our current notions that "intentional actions" are
>> performed for reasons described in terms of PROPOSITIONAL attitudes is a
>> long standing orientation of analytical philosophy.  To "understand" the
>> basis of intentional actions, an understanding of what CAUSED them is
>> required.
>> The job of folk psychology is often assumed to be providing third-personal
>> PREDICTION and EXPLANATION of why others are acting with intentions.  This
>> orientation assumes folk psychology is best understood as some kind of
>> THEORY and folk psychology's core FUNCTION was predictive-explanatory in
>> character. [often termed theory-theory of mind]  Our understanding of mental
>> states from this assumption is at root theoretical.  If REASONS are
>> understood as the INFERRED CAUSES of action it is a short step to assuming
>> that EXPLAINING action is a kind of "theoretical" activity. Hutto calls this
>> theory-theory framework an "out of sight, INTO mind"  approach.  Intelligent
>> engagements with the world are MEDIATED by REPRESENTING the REPRESENTATIONS
>> by a process of taking a theoretical [3rd person SPECTATOR] stance towards
>> engagements.  In particular, it requires the 3rd person spectator to
>> FORMULATE HYPOTHESES in the mind that are not open to view.
>> As Hutto states,
>> Talk of  'unobservable' EPISODES later gave way to talk of 'abstract' or
>> 'hypothetical' constructs, namely causally effacacious mental STATES.
>> Mental states were thought to be entities that occupied causal roles,
>> interacted with each other in complex ways and were identified in part by
>> there typical causes and effects.  From this thought about the nature of
>> mental STATES, it is no great stretch to imagine that the meaning of
>> mentalistic CONCEPTS might follow a similar pattern, being fixed by having
>> appropriate links or relations to other concepts.  That is, they might be
>> defined by there place or role within a wider system of laws or, more
>> softly, an inferential network.  On this view, the very meaning of a
>> particular mental concept is determined by the distinctive role it plays
>> within a network of principles.  In this respect, our familiar mentalistic
>> vocabulary (i.e. our talk of thoughts, feelings, and expectations) would be
>> similar in important respects to other theoretically embedded vocabularies
>> (i.e. talk of electrons, atoms, and gravity)
>> Hutto is giving an historical narrative of how we have developed a folk
>> psychology in which mental terms are thought to be "theoretical".  In
>> philosophical circles theory-theory evolved in response to the failure of
>> empiricist theories of meaning that grounded mental terms in publicly
>> observable behaviors OR introspected mental objects.
>> Theory-theory models contain PROPOSITIONALLY articulated PRINCIPLES,
>> RULES, or schemas that must be bound together in coherent ways to FORM A
>> THEORY.  The theory models have an internal STRUCTURE required to navigate
>> ones way in the world.
>> As Hutto explains,
>> The unifying idea behind all of these proposals is that predicting how
>> another creature might act (or, the flipside, to explain why it acted)
>> requires representing its complex state of mind, in which certain
>> PROPOSITIONAL attitudes relate to one another in an appropriately structured
>> way.... it was pretty universally held that understanding others REQUIRED
>> having a THEORY of mind."
>> The FUNCTION of folk psychology, from this theory-theory model is to
>> provide predictions and explanations of actions. Theories provide powerful
>> means of anticipating, explaining, and CONTROLLING what happens, precisely
>> because they tap into the world of the unseen and the abstract.  A good
>> theory reliably guides expectations, even in novel circumstances.  Folk
>> psychology's PRIMARY FUNCTION was to provide 3rd personal predictions and
>> explanations as the best way to understand others.  This functional
>> presupposition is deeply ingrained in the folk psychology of those schooled
>> in the analytic tradition.
>> Hutto asks does theory-theory models actually yield good reliable 3rd
>> personal predictions and explanations of actions in everyday contexts?  Is
>> attributing propositional attitudes in the 3rd person the best approach to
>> understand others?  Is the primary function of folk psychology the
>> prediction, controlling, and explaining behavior?  Hutto's answer is these
>> notions are restrictive and questionable assumptions.  This "received view"
>> of folk psychology is a theory of abstraction which has crowded out other
>> alternative understandings of folk psychological functions which Hutto's
>>  edited book addresses.
>> The authors in the book explore "empathy" that is not seen as a reaching
>> out to another mind but is an immediate way in which to experience others.
>> It is to EXPERIENCE BEHAVIOR as EXPRESSIVE of mind. Peter Hobson [who writes
>> a chapter] states "We Share, therefore We Think" Hobson suggests our
>> received view places too much emphasis on interpretation of socially
>> isolated individuals. Social experience and understanding for Hobson are
>> founded upon patterns of socio-affective relatedness.  Our sense of "what
>> people are" is constituted by reciprocal affective responsiveness.  The
>> meanings of expressions and gestures are PERCEIVED rather than INFERRED as
>> internal causes of behavior.  This is NOT a SIMULATIONIST model where one
>> employs ONE'S OWN emotional abilities to model or refer to in order to
>> understand the emotions of the other. Simulation theory assumes we DO
>> something of which we are aware and reference in self to understand other.
>> For Hutto when we experience others we do so effortlessly and are NOT aware
>> of modelling them or of undergoing a phenomonological shift so as to adopt
>> their perspective.  The evidence from mirror neurons indicates that actions,
>> expressions, and gestures are DIRECTLY PERCEIVED rather than understood
>> through a modelling process that follows and tracks perception OF behavior.
>> Mike, I'm not sure if this extended historical review of propositional 3rd
>> person models of folk psychology, [within the tradition of analytical
>> philosophy] is a partial answer to computational models of theory
>> construction or just another meandering reverie as I try to understand ZPD's
>> and dynamic assessments as dialogical relational models.  It does speak to
>> different presuppositions within various theoretical models and the assumed
>> "entities" that "inhabit" the theory.  The 1st person, 3rd person, and
>> emerging dialogical 2nd person perspectives presuppose different "ground"
>> and "functions" which are HISTORICALLY constituted notions.
>> I want to end with a thought from Penti's article when discussing
>> El'Konin's theory of play.
>> "Play is NOT a process of mastering the forms of human activity or social
>> roles, which was stressed during the soviet period in particular, but rather
>> the CONTENTS OF MORAL NORMS.   As Penti emphasizes we have to answer the
>> question "What develops?" in terms of the MORAL CONTENT OF HUMAN
>> RELATIONS... It is impossible to think that the content and structure of
>> play develop separated from each other" (p.6)
>> I hope my extended reverie speaks to the moral necessity of  dialogical
>> intersubjective norms that are grounded within socio-affective engagements.
>> Larry
>> On Tue, Nov 30, 2010 at 7:00 PM, mike cole <lchcmike@gmail.com> wrote:
>>> Too much there for me to grok all at one time, Larry, but starting near
>>> the top I wanted to respond to this:
>>> *"Why do we emphasize the differences between "play" and "learning"
>>> which create historically constituted boundaries?  Could a case be made for
>>> interweaving play and learning into a single dialogical zone of
>>> intersubjective development?"
>>> *
>>> Efforts at environmental design such as the playworlds described in some
>>> of the MCA publications (one of which was discussed here, as I recall), the
>>> 5th Dimension project started at LCHC, Eugene's work at Los Redes in
>>> Deleware, Lois and colleagues Allstars project, as well as recent virtual
>>> world efforts such as Quest Atlantis try exactly to * interweave  **"play
>>> and learning into a single dialogical zone of intersubjective development?"
>>> .
>>> *Here's a question about all of this work I think needs attention, if
>>> only to dismiss it : How does design research that creates playworlds
>>> (broadly construed) as a mode of theory and practice confront John-Laird's
>>> insistence (reviewing Jim Wertsch's 1985 book on Vygotsky) that if the work
>>> does not adopt the computational approach as both theory and tool-generating
>>> methodology, it does not count as useful theory?
>>> *
>>> *mike
>>> *
>>> *
>>> On Tue, Nov 30, 2010 at 7:49 AM, Larry Purss <lpscholar2@gmail.com>wrote:
>>>> Hi Mike
>>>> Thank you for posting this article
>>>>  I want to draw attention to Penti's article on the creation of ZPD's
>>>> as a perspective which links up ideas and processes that are so often
>>>> differentiated into what are considered separate world's of existence.  Her
>>>> article has also given me a little window into David Kellogg's passionate
>>>> elaboration of the distinctions between teacher scaffolding of learning and
>>>> creating "zones" of development.
>>>> [I will add that Paul Thibault's perspectives {in MCA 2000, Vol. 7,
>>>> Issue 4, p291-311} are lurking in the background of my thoughts but I'm
>>>> still trying to develop the background knowledge required to incorporate his
>>>> ideas as related to ZPD's.
>>>> The question that is forming as I read David's, Penti's and Paul
>>>> Thibault's reflexive dialogues on dialogical open ended development is:
>>>> "Why do we emphasize the differences between "play" and "learning" which
>>>> create historically constituted boundaries?  Could a case be made for
>>>> interweaving play and learning into a single dialogical zone of
>>>> intersubjective development?
>>>> In other words, could the processes amplified in our notions of play
>>>> [narrative intersubjective activity] and the processes amplified in our
>>>> notions of developmental learning [informational propositional cognition] be
>>>> an artifactual dichotomy of how we structure and form our particular
>>>> sociohistorical institutional arrangements.
>>>> Is there a possibility that Playworld ZPD's, and school ZPD's are
>>>> describing the SAME underlying processes, but different aspects are
>>>> amplified - and "biased"  as we develop our theories by "looking" for
>>>> different aspects of a common human dialogical process of living in the
>>>> world.  As we "leave play behind" and engage in "formal" learning" in
>>>> "preparation for" WORK are we creating artifactual stages that separate
>>>> vital human processes that are central to development.
>>>> Another theme that runs through my question of a single developmental
>>>> process is the human "desire" for PROXIMITY and the creation of zones of
>>>> PROXIMITY [intersubjectivity] and the equally powerful "desire" for
>>>> EXPLORATION and open ended novelty and newness.  This is where my
>>>> speculations from "attachment theory" come in.  Are the PURSUIT of PROXIMITY
>>>> [and the metaphor of "containment] and the desire for exploration LINKED?
>>>> In other words notions such as Winnicott's "holding environment" the
>>>> creation of "third spaces" etc as ZONES of PROXIMAL CONTAINMENT may be
>>>> PRIMARY [in time scale] to create the dialogical space in which a capacity
>>>> for AGENCY is constituted [within top down dialogical scalar level] BEFORE
>>>> the infant or child VENTURES FORTH in exploration and subjective engagement
>>>> in the world.
>>>> I recognize I am making a case to BIAS the PURSUIT of PROXIMITY as
>>>> foundational in the zones WE [emphasize WE] constitute and from which we
>>>> venture forth.  In play worlds, when the pursuit of proximity is treatened
>>>> by rupture and separation the "zone" collapses as the play STOPS [until
>>>> through dialogue WE negotiate and find OUR way back to a place of
>>>> CONTAINMENT]  I wonder if LEARNING WORLDS are fundamentally different OR if
>>>> learning zones also need to accomodate the "desire" for the PURSUIT of
>>>> learning.  When play AND learning LEAD development is there COMMON GROUND
>>>> agentic capacity and a "sense of self" is "internalized" developmentally the
>>>> person is no longer "determined" by the "here & now" pursuit of proximity
>>>> BUT threaten the self's core intersubjective need for proximity and the
>>>> result may be that exploration [learning] is put at risk as the person's
>>>> energy re-orients to attend to the pursuit of proximity.   Play worlds are
>>>> often described as zones of "exploration" and I agree that for development
>>>> to flouish play worlds must constitute exploration and creativity.  However,
>>>> in order for playworlds to constitute exploratory activity there must first
>>>> be constituted a dialogical zone of PROXIMITY that is intersubjective "all
>>>> the way down".
>>>> I think it is easier to make the case for PROXIMITY as the common ground
>>>> in play worlds.  However, as the young child develops and moves into formal
>>>> school settings are the desires for zones of proximity "transcended" when
>>>> "agentic capacity" is "developed" OR does the need for zones of dialogical
>>>> proximity continue to be the common ground for exploration, creativity, and
>>>> emergence.  In other worlds [different from the play world]  do our basic
>>>> needs and desires for zones of proximity become "transcended" or only
>>>> incorporated into new formations [that are constituted by the socio
>>>> historical institutional structures of our cultural worlds]
>>>> I am not sure how "basic" are the needs for "containment" {ie metaphors
>>>> of community, home, family, common ground} and "exploration" {creativity,
>>>> imagination etc"} or if they are only my own particular "biases" that have
>>>> emerged from my particular ontogenetic development.  However, the tensions
>>>> and relational links between the concepts of zones of intersubjective
>>>> proximity and the concepts of agentic intentional exploration seem to my
>>>> biased perspective to be "basic" needs. [AND LINKED at multiple scaler
>>>> levels -see Paul Thibault]
>>>> Penti Hakkarainen's and Milda Bredikyte's article posted was the trigger
>>>> for this extended reverie.
>>>> Larry
>>>>   On Sun, Nov 28, 2010 at 6:19 PM, mike cole <lchcmike@gmail.com>wrote:
>>>>>  The attached paper addresses what is common to play and instruction
>>>>> such
>>>>> that they should both
>>>>> be sites for creation of zopeds. It appeared in the Russian,
>>>>> Cultural-Historical Psychology.
>>>>> Pentti is somewhere around xmca I believe
>>>>> mike
>>>>> __________________________________________
>>>>> _____
>>>>> xmca mailing list
>>>>> xmca@weber.ucsd.edu
>>>>> http://dss.ucsd.edu/mailman/listinfo/xmca
>>>>   On Sun, Nov 28, 2010 at 6:19 PM, mike cole <lchcmike@gmail.com>wrote:
>>>>>  The attached paper addresses what is common to play and instruction
>>>>> such
>>>>> that they should both
>>>>> be sites for creation of zopeds. It appeared in the Russian,
>>>>> Cultural-Historical Psychology.
>>>>> Pentti is somewhere around xmca I believe
>>>>> mike
>>>>> __________________________________________
>>>>> _____
>>>>> xmca mailing list
>>>>> xmca@weber.ucsd.edu
>>>>> http://dss.ucsd.edu/mailman/listinfo/xmca
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