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[xmca] Re: Lytical

I'm putting it back on xmca as requested, Greg.
Further investigation led me to the fact that the suffix "-lytical" means "to dissolve." Perhaps Vygotsky had a cinematic metaphor in mind, changing from one scene, or situation, to another, by a dissolve? /Kritikos/, the root for "critical", on the other hand, means judgment or discernment, which I take to be a one-or-the-other process.

In my reading of "The Problem of Age" I did not gain from the material about the lytical periods much about breaking down. It was much more about consolidating and strengthening newly acquired forms of activity in preparation perhaps for breaking out of the situation in a critical phase of development. The critical phases are famously destructive of course.

On the side, I would really urge xmca-ers who work in literacy to please join in. I am a social philosopher who wants to ally myself with a living and robust current of psychology, but I am not myself an elementary school teacher and know almost nothing about learning to read. The article Mike wants me to read (and which I am still reading and will forward to the list when I am done) is totally rivetting stuff. Written 24 years ago it engages Vygotsky, Luria and A N Leontyev and is so sophisticated it bowls me over really. But I am still searching for something I could *disagree* with.


Greg Thompson wrote:
Not OK just yet. I'd like to try to do some dissolving of your parsing of "lytic" a bit.

I thought you said you were parsing (lysing?) "lytic" as "gradual"? "Gradual" seems very different from "loosening" or "dissolving", no?

The process may be gradual, but to say that "lytical" means "gradual" is like saying that "boiling" means "gradual" (after all it takes time for water to boil - esp. if you are watching it).

It seems like there is something very important in the rest of the word "lytic" and how that relates to development. It seems that part of what is being described here is the sense in which developments can actually involve the breaking down (lysing!) of previous psychological "structures" or "formations". That seems much more interesting than "gradual". And it also seems a wonderful corrective to the commonly assumed model of development as simple linear progression.

For example, there is a classic example of language learning where very young kids will say conjugate verbs correctly b.c. they are memorized, but then when they start to learn the rules of conjugation, they will no longer produce them correctly (b.c. some don't fit the patterns that they are learning - e.g., past tense of "run" is not "runned"). So their memorized understanding of "ran" must be "lysed"! The result is that from the dissolving of those meanings a new meaning can emerge - e.g., add "ed" to the present tense of a verb to make it past tense.
What do you think?

I'd be interested in opening this conversation to XMCA if you are interested. Many folks smarter than I when it comes to translation and such.


On Sat, Oct 13, 2012 at 7:06 PM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net>> wrote:

    check the definitions for the suffix "-lytical." They mean
    "loosening or dissolving." OK?
-- ------------------------------------------------------------------------
    *Andy Blunden*
    Home Page: http://home.mira.net/~andy/ <http://home.mira.net/%7Eandy/>
    Book: http://www.brill.nl/concepts

Gregory A. Thompson, Ph.D.
883 Spencer W. Kimball Tower
Department of Anthropology
Brigham Young University
Provo, UT 84602

*Andy Blunden*
Home Page: http://home.mira.net/~andy/
Book: http://www.brill.nl/concepts

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