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AW: [xmca] Operations

Mike, and Andy,
when I talk about operations, goals and the macrostructure of activity, I refer to the attached chapter " 3.5. The General Structure of Activity" of Leontev's book "activity, consciousness, and personality". In this chapter, Leontev explains these terms - in my view - in a very decisive and comprehensive manner.
I understand the term "action" NOT as automated behavior but as purposeful, goal-directed behavior. The goal of an action is already imagined as an inner image of the future situation which the person is going to reach. So action and goal are mutually related. 
I understand the term "operation" as the automated behavior of a person that is related to the conditions under which the goal of an action is given (a person uses different operations when he writes a letter by hand or by a computer. The movements of the finger are very different. Most of the operations an adult uses has been formerly an action because he has to learn it and when it is learned it can become an operation within another action. 

Prof. Dr. Manfred Holodynski
Institut für Psychologie in Bildung und Erziehung
Westfälische Wilhelms-Universität Münster
Fliednerstr. 21
D-48149 Münster
+49-(0)-251-83-34310 (Sekretariat)
+49-(0)-251-83-34314 (Fax)

-----Ursprüngliche Nachricht-----
Von: xmca-bounces@weber.ucsd.edu [mailto:xmca-bounces@weber.ucsd.edu] Im Auftrag von mike cole
Gesendet: Dienstag, 9. April 2013 06:02
An: ablunden@mira.net; eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
Betreff: Re: [xmca] Operations

That's great Andy. thanks.
Is this what you were referring to, Manfred?

On Mon, Apr 8, 2013 at 8:56 PM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:

> Mike, I attach pp 154-180 from A N Leontyev's "Development of Mind" 
> where he introduces the concept of "operation" as part of a "second 
> stage of evolution of the psyche".
> Full text at 
> http://www.erythrospress.com/**store/leontyev.html<http://www.erythros
> press.com/store/leontyev.html>
> Andy
> mike cole wrote:
>> Yes, thanks Andy: OPERATIONS are something like automated actions, 
>> subject to conditions not goals.
>> mike
>> On Mon, Apr 8, 2013 at 8:39 PM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net <mailto:
>> ablunden@mira.net>> wrote:
>>     "operations", you mean.
>>     a
>>     mike cole wrote:
>>         What is your understanding of this issue, Manfred. In the text
>>         most used by Americans, *actions*
>>         are something like automated actions, subject to condions not
>>         goals. Components of actions.
>>         What does it mean, ontogenetically, for operations to preceed
>>         actions? How does this relate to the classic Leontiev formulation?
>>         Mike
>>         On Thu, Apr 4, 2013 at 6:28 PM, Andy Blunden
>>         <ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net>
>>         <mailto:ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net>>> wrote:
>>             Michael, here is what Manfred said in his message:
>>                "A young infant has not already established a
>>         goal-driven level of
>>                actions. In the first weeks one can observe the
>>         acquisition of
>>             first
>>                operations and of first expectations what should
>>         happen. But these
>>                expectations are not yet represented as a mental image
>>         about the
>>                desired future states. This is the product of the
>>         acquisition of a
>>                sign system which enables the person to evoke and
>>          imagine a future
>>                state in the here and now and to start to strive for
>>         it. And for
>>                this starting point, not only to imagine different
>>         future states,
>>                but also to select one of them and to start to strive
>>         for it,
>>                emotional processes come into play that color one of
>>         the imagined
>>                future state e.g. in a state worth striving for and
>>         that mobilize
>>                the executive power to start striving for it. However,
>>         the ability
>>                to form such notions of goals and to transform them
>>         into actions is
>>                not something that occurs automatically. It emerges in
>>         a long-drawn
>>                ontogenetic learning process in which the attainment of
>>         goals
>>                through actions is tried, tested, and increasingly
>>         optimized."
>>             I make no claim to be a psychologist, Michael, but it always
>>             seemed to me that ascribing a knowledge of the world to
>>         neonates
>>             would be a hard position to sustain. We have to find some
>>         other
>>             way of understanding the behaviour of neonates and infants
>>         other
>>             than presuming that they form a goal and then take appropriate
>>             premeditated action to realise that goal.
>>             An "operation" is a form of behaviour which has the
>>         potential to
>>             be transformed into an action, that is, for the subject to
>>         become
>>             consciously aware of the behaviour and subject it to conscious
>>             control. So at first I think we have to say that the neonate
>>             smiles, moves its hands around, pouts, squeezes, etc, etc.,
>>             without first forming the idea "I think I will smile at this
>>             woman, and she might give me some more food" or any such
>>         thing.
>>             But after the relevant stimuli have been repeatedly
>>         accompanied by
>>             the various kinds of responses which adult carers provide
>>         to the
>>             child and the successful satisfaction of the stimuli, the
>>         child
>>             might begin to associate the behaviour with an object,
>>         accomodate
>>             its behaviour to the social world around them, and what
>>         began as
>>             an operation may be transformed into an action. Otherwise,
>>         I think
>>             we are imply a hell of a lot about innate knowledge!
>>             Andy
>>             Glassman, Michael wrote:
>>                 .... But I also I think disagree with Andy to some
>>         extent.  Do
>>                 infants simply engage in operations?  Is that
>>         possible? Isn't
>>                 there an action tied to every operation, or else why
>>         is the
>>                 infant doing it.  I think infants definitely do react to
>>                 stimuli (feedback I think can be define through
>>         information
>>                 processing but it can also perhaps be defined through
>>         social
>>                 cognitive theory which is more behavior oriented).
>>          But when
>>                 they react don't they have an aim of some type?  It
>>         might be
>>                 very rudimentary but it is an aim and the child is
>>         developing
>>                 operations to meet those aims (it also seems to me
>>         that there
>>                 are much fuzzier boundaries between operations and
>>         actions at
>>                 this point).
>>             ______________________________**____________
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>>     --     ------------------------------**------------------------------
>> **------------
>>     *Andy Blunden*
>>     Home Page: http://home.mira.net/~andy/ 
>> <http://home.mira.net/%7Eandy/ **>
>>     Book: http://www.brill.nl/concepts
>> http://marxists.academia.edu/**AndyBlunden<http://marxists.academia.e
>> du/AndyBlunden>
> --
> ------------------------------**------------------------------**
> ------------
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> Home Page: http://home.mira.net/~andy/
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