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[Xmca-l] Re: poverty/class



Andy,

I fear that you are going to discover that I'm really a one trick pony...

I read Bakhtin's notion of "consummation" as being inflected by Hegel's
concept of recognition (it isn't exactly the same but the parallels are
striking - one is consummated by the gaze of the other).

And I think the Hegel's theory of subjectivity is fundamentally contrary to
the childist theory of subjectivity which is more Kantian to my mind (I
fear that may take a lot of explaining, but I'll leave it at that for now).

I'd love to hear more from David about what he thinks the consequences are
of taking on a childist approach. What is lost in that approach? And
similarly, what is gained by taking a more Vygotskian approach?
-greg


On Sun, Mar 23, 2014 at 2:10 AM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:

> why do you say "pace Hegel" Greg?
>
> andy
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> *Andy Blunden*
> http://home.mira.net/~andy/
>
>
> Greg Thompson wrote:
>
>> David,
>> Yes, you caught what I was saying in your parenthetical. My point was that
>> Vera nicely lays out and critiques the dominant view of creativity - i.e.
>> the one where creativity is anti-social.
>>
>> And I'd add that in my reading of Bakhtin, I have difficulty imagining him
>> as a childist, not because of his disdain for children (a topic of which I
>> had no knowledge prior to your post), but because I see him as drawing on
>> a
>> different understanding of human subjectivity - one that draws from a
>> tradition that is not about the intrinsic flowering of the individual but
>> rather is about the imbricated emergence of an individual who is shot
>> through / consummated by others. (pace Hegel, imho).
>>
>> -greg
>>
>>
>>
>> On Sun, Mar 23, 2014 at 1:00 AM, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com>
>> wrote:
>>
>>
>>
>>> Greg--
>>>
>>> Actually, I think of Vera's work as precisely the opposite of an
>>> anti-social theory of creativity (but perhaps that is just what you
>>> meant to say?). Vera's work on creative collaborations, for example,
>>> stresses that in and alongside every famous creative voice there is at
>>> least one and probably many more equally creative voices. It seems so
>>> obvious to me, when I read Tolstoy, that I am really hearing the voice
>>> of his wife, and not just when the female characters speak; I cannot
>>> be surprised that nothing he wrote after the crackup of his marriage
>>> measures up to War and Peace or Anna K. Of course, the social medium
>>> of art cannot be reduced to the interpersonal in this way; but I think
>>> Vera would say that the tragedy of our artists is that it often must
>>> be.
>>>
>>> Actually, reading over what I wrote, I discovered with some chagrin
>>> that, your kind comments to the contrary notwithstanding, it is not
>>> particularly well framed. As usual, I have left far too much daylight
>>> between the mounting and the canvas. The Halliday quote fits
>>> reasonably well but that is mostly thanks to him not me. But I meant
>>> to say that Bakhtin's ideas were being portrayed at the conference as
>>> being thoroughly "childist" and this childism was, according to many
>>> speakers (e.g. Eugene Matusov, Ana Marjanovic-Shane and others) what
>>> made Bakhtin preferable to Vygotsky (even though everybody has now
>>> admitted that Bakhtin was, personally, a bit of a scoundrel, not least
>>> for the way he treated HIS partners in dialogue, Voloshinov and
>>> Medvedev).
>>>
>>> This I found inexplicable. How can anyone read Bakhtin (who appears to
>>> have loathed children and who certainly wrote that child's play had
>>> neither a moral nor an aesthetic dimension) as a childist? But the
>>> comments of Mike and Andy, on how creativity is being set out as a
>>> kind of "Weak Utopianism" (to quote Michael Gardiner's phrase), make a
>>> certain sense of this nonsense. The collapse of the USSR is to be
>>> taken as a collapse of the cultural-historical in psychology as well.
>>> Henceforth, the social is to be reduced to the interpersonal, and the
>>> creative society to the clever society of one.
>>>
>>> David Kellogg
>>> Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
>>>
>>>
>>> On 23 March 2014 14:29, Greg Thompson <greg.a.thompson@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>
>>>
>>>> David,
>>>> Loved your framing of this as "Anti-social creativity". This is the
>>>> model
>>>> of creativity in much of the West! (cf. Vera John-Steiner's work). It's
>>>> everywhere. Read that biography of Steve Jobs - wait, no don't do
>>>> that...
>>>>
>>>> Also, fascinating (and sad) to hear about how capitalism is wrenching
>>>>
>>>>
>>> older
>>>
>>>
>>>> workers in Korea. Sounds to me like "Abstract labor" concretized! (i.e.,
>>>> here is the concrete manifestation of "abstract labor" - labor viewed in
>>>> the abstract - one worker is as good as another regardless of who that
>>>> laborer is).
>>>>
>>>> Nothing is sacred with capitalism, seems another "Chinese wall" is
>>>> crumbling under the weighty flow of global capital...
>>>>
>>>> Very sad (and I suspect that those older workers never knew what hit
>>>>
>>>>
>>> them -
>>>
>>>
>>>> they certainly didn't expect it).
>>>> -greg
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>> On Sat, Mar 22, 2014 at 3:52 PM, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com>
>>>>
>>>>
>>> wrote:
>>>
>>>
>>>> As you probably know, Korea is currently run by the neomilitaristic
>>>>> scion of the previous dictator, who took power in a transparently
>>>>> rigged election. No, I don't mean that Korea--I mean this one.
>>>>>
>>>>> Park Geunhye, the daughter of our former dictator Park Cheonghi, came
>>>>> to power about a year ago, first by stealing the opposition's clothes
>>>>> (to be fair, they made it very easy for her by having such a very
>>>>> unambitious programme to begin with). The National Intelligence
>>>>> Service then flooded the country with highly creative Tweets alleging
>>>>> that her opponents were soft on communism, one of those new
>>>>> mobilizations of social media that you may not have heard so much
>>>>> about.
>>>>>
>>>>> Anyway, to make a short story long, having stolen the opposition's
>>>>> clothes, she is now obliged to renege on her promises in the interests
>>>>> of those who financed her campaign. Now, part of this involves
>>>>> reneging on a massive programme of social welfare that Koreans
>>>>> desperately wanted (they deposed the mayor of Seoul in the interests
>>>>> of keeping a free lunch programme, for example). But surely, one must
>>>>> put something in the place of a promise of pensions, job creation
>>>>> schemes, minimum wage, etc, mustn't one?
>>>>>
>>>>> No, not really--all you have to do is babble and blather about a new
>>>>> "creativity-driven economy". The "creativity driven economy" is a
>>>>> pleasant way of referring to a highly unpleasant fact of life. In
>>>>> South Korea, where we nominally respect the elderly (and we certainly
>>>>> pay them more than the young) it soon becomes cheaper to employ four
>>>>> or five young people rather than one older one. This means,
>>>>> necessarily, booting out older workers around age fifty and hiring
>>>>> younger ones to replace them. The older workers (and, for that atter,
>>>>> younger ones who cannot find unemployment) are then given a little
>>>>> handout and encouraged to "create" their own jobs.
>>>>>
>>>>> Of course, for this to work (as a scam, I mean, it's obviously a
>>>>> non-starter as a social welfare scheme), one really has to try to
>>>>> inculcate the kind of "every man for himself" mentality that people
>>>>> have in other countries, and that is really a bit of a poser in a
>>>>> country which, although highly stratified socially, is still very
>>>>> collectivistic culturally. That is where education comes in.
>>>>>
>>>>> Consider the folllowing quotation from Halliday (2004, the Language of
>>>>> Early Childhood, p. 251):
>>>>>
>>>>> "Much of the discussion of chlidren's language development in the last
>>>>> quarter of a century (Halliday is writing in 1991--DK), especially in
>>>>> educational contexts, has been permeated by a particular ideological
>>>>> construction of childhood. This view combines individualism,
>>>>> romanticism, and what Martin calls 'childism', the Disneyfied vision
>>>>> of a child that is constructed in the media and in certain kinds of
>>>>> kiddielit. Each child is presented as a freestanding, autonomous
>>>>> being; and learning consists in releasing and brining into flower the
>>>>> latent awareness that is already there in the bud. This is the view
>>>>> that was embodied in the 'creativity' and 'personal growth' models of
>>>>> education by James Britton, John Dixon, and David Holbrook in Great
>>>>> Britain; and more recently, from another standpoint, in the United
>>>>> States in Donald Graves' conception of chldren's writing as process
>>>>> and of their texts as property to be individually owned. It has been
>>>>> supported theoretically first by Chomskyaninnatism and latterly by
>>>>> cognitive science models which interpret learning as the acquisition
>>>>> of ready0made information by some kind of independent process device."
>>>>>  (I omit Halliday's references).
>>>>>
>>>>> My wife and I recently attended the Dialogic Pedagogy conference on
>>>>> Bakhtin in New Zealand where these "childist" ideas were very much in
>>>>> evidence, and where they were explicitly opposed to Vygotskyan ones!
>>>>> At first I found this opposition rather bizarre, not least because I
>>>>> had recently reviewed an excellent piece of work by our own
>>>>> Wolff-Michael Roth for the Dialogic Pedagogy Journal. Roth's piece,
>>>>> which you can read in the DPJ archive, had argued for the
>>>>> compatibility of Bakhtin and Vygotsky (on theoretical grounds it is
>>>>> true). There was also a very fine presentation by Michael Gardiner on
>>>>> Bakhtin, the autonomists, and the 99/1% discourse surrounding the
>>>>> Occupy movement.
>>>>>
>>>>> Now I am starting to understand a little better. There is, actually, a
>>>>> model of creativity out there which is individualistic,
>>>>> entrepreneurial, anti-socialist, and even anti-social. The problem is,
>>>>> it's also anti-creativity.
>>>>>
>>>>> David Kellogg
>>>>> Hankuk University of Foreign Studies.
>>>>>
>>>>> On 23 March 2014 04:26, Larry Purss <lpscholar2@gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> Andy,
>>>>>> Your comment:
>>>>>>
>>>>>>  "Avram, I am not convinced that creating niche economies can in any
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> way
>>>
>>>
>>>> ameliorate the domination of big capital. We have to find a way to
>>>>>> penetrate and subvert the sources of capitalist exploitation, rather
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> than
>>>
>>>
>>>> offering "alternatives,"
>>>>>>
>>>>>> suggests there may be ways to potentially penetrate and subvert "at
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> the
>>>
>>>
>>>> source" rather than act to *create* alternatives.
>>>>>>
>>>>>>  I have wondered if my utopian sympathies which show my curiosity with
>>>>>> exploring *alternatives* can be viewed as *living experiments* or
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> *living
>>>
>>>
>>>> laboratories* where alternative life styles and attitudes are
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> generated
>>>
>>>
>>>> and
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> lived.
>>>>>> It must be my personal experiences with *alternate communities* which
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> have
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> attempted to actualize their ideal alternatives. I must admit, most of
>>>>>> these experiments are failures. However Cultural Historical Theory
>>>>>> developed in an *alternate setting* and Dewey and Mead in Chicago
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> gathered
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> together a committed group with shared ideals.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> In order to penetrate capitalism *at its source* may require
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> demonstrating
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> other ways of life as experiments which express other *values*. Some
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> of
>>>
>>>
>>>> these alternative approaches will include *alternative community*.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> The current discussion on the drift of *university departments*
>>>>>> suggests alternative forms of gathering may need to come into
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> existence
>>>
>>>
>>>> to
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> express alternative *values* However I also accept this *hope* may be
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> naïve
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> and not grounded in recognition of the depth of capitalist ideology
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> which
>>>
>>>
>>>> co-ops ALL utopian ideals.  Therefore the requirement to subvert the
>>>>>> *source*?
>>>>>>
>>>>>> To once again return to Alex Kozulin's book which is expressing a
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> theme.
>>>
>>>
>>>>  He is exploring the *double-faceted* nature of consciousness and
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> suggests
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> the
>>>>>>
>>>>>> "interpretive or metacognitive function [aspect?] of consciousness may
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> have
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> an AUTONOMY from REGULATIVE AND CONTROLLING functions.
>>>>>>
>>>>>> I wonder if this *autonomy* can extend to *alternative communities*
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> forming
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> to express alternative *values*?
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>> On Fri, Mar 21, 2014 at 7:50 PM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net>
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> wrote:
>>>
>>>
>>>> One of the themes of the correlation you mention, Mike, is the focus
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> on
>>>
>>>
>>>> "the creative industries." There are theories about the way cities
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> can
>>>
>>>
>>>> escape from their rust-bucket depression by promoting "the creative
>>>>>>> industries." These include software development (e.g. computer
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> games),
>>>
>>>
>>>> advertising, packaging and fashion. That's probably fine for urban
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> renewal,
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> except for the artists who get booted out of their old warehouses
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> which
>>>
>>>
>>>> get
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> done up for the expected "creative industries," but where it's has a
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> big
>>>
>>>
>>>> negative impact in the academy is in the "critical sciences." People
>>>>>>> involved in social and political criticism are suddenly faced with
>>>>>>> imperatives to serve the "creative industries." So feminist,
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> philosophical
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> and  political critiques, which were surviving by a thread, now have
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> to
>>>
>>>
>>>> educate software makers who are building computer games or artists
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> who
>>>
>>>
>>>> are
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> designing advertisements all in the name of needing to support the
>>>>>>> "creative industries."
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> Avram, I am not convinced that creating niche economies can in any
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> way
>>>
>>>
>>>> ameliorate the domination of big capital. We have to find a way to
>>>>>>> penetrate and subvert the sources of capitalist exploitation, rather
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> than
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> offering "alternatives," I think. Capitalism can do perfectly well
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> without
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> a certain percentage of the world's population who find an
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> "alternative".
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> Andy
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> ------------------------------------------------------------
>>> ------------
>>>
>>>
>>>> *Andy Blunden*
>>>>>>> http://home.mira.net/~andy/
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> mike cole wrote:
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> So my noticing of the fascination and promotion of "culture and
>>>>>>>> creativity" discourse, design schools, and neoliberalism may be more
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> than a
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> symptom of failing eyesight?
>>>>>>>> Mike
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> On Friday, March 21, 2014, Avram Rips <arips@optonline.net <mailto:
>>>>>>>> arips@optonline.net>> wrote:
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>     The problem is the connection between people alienated from
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> their
>>>
>>>
>>>>     labor, or no labor and building a new democratic structure- that
>>>>>>>>     can happen in a small scale , and spread out to new modes of
>>>>>>>>     production away from the destruction of capital-such as chiapas
>>>>>>>>     and taking over factories in Argentina.
>>>>>>>>     ----- Original Message ----- From: "Andy Blunden" <
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> ablunden@mira.net>
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>>     To: "eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity" <xmca-l@mailman.ucsd.edu
>>>>>>>>                   Sent: Friday, March 21, 2014 8:35 AM
>>>>>>>>     Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: poverty/class
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>         Yes, it seems to me that the burgeoning inequality created
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> by
>>>
>>>
>>>>         neoliberalism is a situation crying out for imaginative
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> social
>>>
>>>
>>>>         entrepreneurship, i.e., social movement building. It is good
>>>>>>>>         to hear that the 1/99 protests have generated talk about
>>>>>>>>         inequality, but that in itself does not create a solution,
>>>>>>>>         does it?
>>>>>>>>         Andy
>>>>>>>>         ------------------------------
>>>>>>>> ------------------------------
>>>>>>>> ------------
>>>>>>>>         *Andy Blunden*
>>>>>>>>         http://home.mira.net/~andy/ <http://home.mira.net/%7Eandy/>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>         Avram Rips wrote:
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>             Innovation and entrepreneurship  in some ways means
>>>>>>>>             capital crowding out social space and solidarity. This
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> is
>>>
>>>
>>>>             evident in cities-whole neighborhoods taken over by
>>>>>>>>             wealthy crafts people, and little focus on co-operative
>>>>>>>>             movements for working class people-where a new focus on
>>>>>>>>             participatory democracy can be developed ,and working
>>>>>>>>             class culture in the Gramscian sense. take care! Avram
>>>>>>>>             ----- Original Message ----- From: "mike cole"
>>>>>>>>             <lchcmike@gmail.com>
>>>>>>>>             To: "Andy Blunden" <ablunden@mira.net>
>>>>>>>>             Cc: "eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity"
>>>>>>>>             <xmca-l@mailman.ucsd.edu>
>>>>>>>>             Sent: Friday, March 21, 2014 12:31 AM
>>>>>>>>             Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: poverty/class
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>                 Andy--- My intent in the garbled sentence you query
>>>>>>>>                 was to suggest that the
>>>>>>>>                 discourse in the US around vicious inequalities has
>>>>>>>>                 increased markedly in
>>>>>>>>                 the past year in tandem with a kind of frenzy in
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> those
>>>
>>>
>>>>                 parts of academia I
>>>>>>>>                 come in contact with about "design, culture, and
>>>>>>>>                 creativity" all of which
>>>>>>>>                 are linked to innovation and entrepreneurship. I
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> very
>>>
>>>
>>>>                 interested in the
>>>>>>>>                 nature of imagination and creativity but I they
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> often
>>>
>>>
>>>>                 appear to be new code
>>>>>>>>                 words for social and individual salvation in a lean,
>>>>>>>>                 mean, neo-liberal
>>>>>>>>                 world.
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>                 Maybe just another of my confusions.
>>>>>>>>                 mike
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>                 On Wed, Mar 19, 2014 at 6:14 PM, Andy Blunden
>>>>>>>>                 <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>                     Mike, could you clarify a little your comment
>>>>>>>>                     below ...
>>>>>>>>                     ------------------------------
>>>>>>>> ------------------------------------------
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>                     *Andy Blunden*
>>>>>>>>                     http://home.mira.net/~andy/
>>>>>>>>                     <http://home.mira.net/%7Eandy/>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>                     mike cole wrote:
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>                         ... My fear that is appearance is
>>>>>>>>                         non-accidentally rated to explosion of
>>>>>>>>                         concern about poverty/class (the 1%/99% idea
>>>>>>>>                         has become ubiquitous in
>>>>>>>>                         American
>>>>>>>>                         discourse).
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>                         mike
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>> --
>>>> Gregory A. Thompson, Ph.D.
>>>> Assistant Professor
>>>> Department of Anthropology
>>>> 883 Spencer W. Kimball Tower
>>>> Brigham Young University
>>>> Provo, UT 84602
>>>> http://byu.academia.edu/GregoryThompson
>>>>
>>>>
>>>
>>>
>>
>>
>>
>>
>
>


-- 
Gregory A. Thompson, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor
Department of Anthropology
883 Spencer W. Kimball Tower
Brigham Young University
Provo, UT 84602
http://byu.academia.edu/GregoryThompson
Status: O