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[Xmca-l] Re: An Abstract Question

I do recognise my own words in there Valerie, including the typo. :)

I don't think it matters whether you call it classification, mapping, sorting or indexing, once you have recognised the object, if all that is at issue is which pigeonhole, class or map you put it into or point to, it's all the same.

The fact that I can recognise the statue of the Virgin Mary outside the local Catholic Church as "the Virgin Mary" does not at all mean that I have the concept of "the virgin mary". The fact that when Barak Obama comes on tele I recognise him as President, does not mean I have the concept of president either. I might think that Joe Bloggs is a criminal, but the only characteristic of Joe that I could name to unambiguously justify my allegation is "criminality," so that would hardly clarify anything. (That's why police are not supposed to do "racial profiling".)

The process of provisionally recognising something, and knowing "which box to put it in," is quite a different thing from constructing the boxes in the first place, and it is that latter process which, in my view, is the important one. That's one of the reasons that legislative bodies in every country in the world spend every day amending legislation, and have been doing that for centuries, not really because the community has changed its mind about something, but because bureaucratic procedures continually confound themselves with the task of putting people, situations and events in the right box, and the rules have to be continuously rewritten.

*Andy Blunden*

valerie A. Wilkinson wrote:
Dear XMCA colleagues,

Something like a year ago, we were having an interesting discussion which
was quite a bit over my head. I apologize for clipping in the following bit
without saying who said it, but perhaps my esteemed colleague recognizes his
own words?:

My note to myself says [a grain of sand in the oyster is the assertion by
Scholar A that there are only two candidates for the "Ur-Act", the basic,
elementary act of human intellectual life.  He says, "I know of only two
answers to this question, relevant to concepts.  The abstract answer given
by mediaeval logic, Linnaeus, the psychology of concepts, all sorts of
present-day continental philosophy is:  pigeon-holing, The concrete answer
given by Hegel, Vygotsky, Activity Theory, Thomas Kuhn, and me is:
problem-solving."] I couldn't work out what "pigeon-holing" is, so I didn't

Would it be a possible interpretation of these two answers to call them:

Classification and Mapping?

Or "sorting" and "trouble shooting"?

"Indexing" and "pathfinding".

I hate to display my woeful ignorance and I should have asked at the time,
but I am unable to classify Kant, of whom I have only read bits, Merleau
Ponty of whom I read Phenomelogy of Perception, on the continental side, and
Peirce and Dewey of whom I have read a bit more on the other (obviously it
is not about this or that side of the Atlantic, but.).  Graduate school
reading during one's pre-service education in philosophy and criticism, even
if it is for a doctorate in comparative literature, leaves one "out there in
the field" using what one learned at school to continue the study of the
problems that life presents. Is "either/or" and preference a possible
elementary act.  Can sorting be done either mathematically (symbolic logic)
or analogically (language), raising the digital vs. analog question? I
wouldn't have dared ask this question last year, but the most recent
conversations, about play and educational environment and praxis have
brought out tons of extremely deep and learned discussion which I am trying
to "grok". Existence or process. Difference. Indeterminacy and
incompleteness. Abstract and applied.