I was not expecting you to agree with me, but rather hoping that
you'll would grasp what I was explaining and respond in some
fashion. It seems either you do not understand or do not want to
understand my offering. I admit, I am disappointed and frustrated
this long-time situation. For me, it is not about blaming or, heaven
forbid, insulting anyone, it's simply about attempting to share a
discovery. I assumed, long ago, that those in the academic world
be the most likely to understand what I had found. But it eventually
became evident to me that the very ones who, I had assumed it
the most fruitful to share my work with, are the most resistant
ideas that relate to their turf. I have yet to receive a cogent or
even minimally relevant response from any person in the world of
academia, except for one Margaret Magnus. She was denied
of her doctorate thesis by Chomsky's linguistics department at MIT.
She persisted and received her doctor of philosophy degree from
Trondheim University. It seems that because her findings ran counter
to the doctrine of many current linguists (that there is no
relationship between the sounds of words and their meanings), that
even though her method of proof of her assertion was scientifically
sound, the established order would not even consider her work on its
merit. She is the only one of those in academia who responded
intelligently to what I shared with her. She posted my writings
website, "Magical Letter Page" and also put it on the web so that
when one searches for "Joseph Gilbert sound symbolism" my writing
I was saying that, after seeing many examples of academic
writings on the subject of phonosemiotics, I have found almost none
that make any sense and/or offer any solid assertions. It is obvious
to me that the sounds we make with our voices express what's
with us. The ability to vocalize evolved because the ability to
communicate was an advantage.
So, what was being communicated by vocal utterances? Whatever it was
still persists in all spoken-word languages. Ultimately, after
thinking, we are left with the sounds of our words and with the
persistent uncertainty of the final meaning of any of the many
we may talk about. We can gain an abstract understanding, with
of how things work, but with all our reasoning we still cannot
any conclusion as to what any of it means to us. It is the sounds
themselves of our words, that serve to inform us of how we are
affected by that which makes up our world. Although this informing
takes place subliminally, it is all we have to go on in our quest
a sense of meaning. That is the magic of
language: How we spell/pronounce our words is what creates the spell
of the our language. This is very primal and quite simple, but has
far-reaching ramifications. The spoken word is the driver of
I come from a partly Jewish background and have much
appreciation for who the Jewish people are and the role they play
in earthly affairs.
It's all about asking the relevant questions and not taking
any wooden nickels.
Joseph C. Gilbert
On Apr 3, 2014, at 3:08 PM, David Kellogg <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Well, of course, I sent out the results of the experiment without
any explanation because I believe that people should think for
But Mike is right--I am mildly insulted when I receive exhortations
to be relevant, be useful, and think for myself by agreeing with
person insulting me.
Perhaps I shouldn't be. The truth is that I have been thinking for
myself for so long that I actually bore myself while still managing
to baffle the reviewers of prominent journals. And it is true that
sometimes--yea, often--I would rather think the way that Vygotsky
did, particularly since the way he thought seems more useful and
relevant to my work than the way that I do.
I would also like to think the way that Hannah Arendt did. One of
the interesting remarks she makes in support of the Kantian idea
that evil is always superficial and only moral good is genuinely
profound is that Eichman had not mastered the grammar of the German
language, and he speaks it rather the way that Arendt herself
English, even though Eichmann is a native speaker of German. What
Arendt means that rather than consciously and deliberately master
the intricate system of German articles and case endings and
genders, Eichmann takes a shortcut--he simply memorizes phrases and
uses them whole, the way we do when we are speaking or trying to
write a very complex foreign language (in my case, Russian).
At first I thought this was merely the hauteur of a very educated
German Jew, the star pupil of Martin Heidegger and Karl Jaspers,
confronted with an unsuccessful peripatetic oil salesman who failed
to complete a high school education and used the extermination of
the Jews as a way of advancing a lackluster career. But Margaret
Trotta, who in the course of making the film "Hanna Arendt" also
subjected herself to thousands of hours of Eichmann testimony,
exactly the same remark. As a consequence of a lack of conscious
awareness of the way the German language works and a reliance on
memorized phrases, Eichmann's language is necessarily thoughtless
and cliche ridden.
Von Trotta's example is this. The judge asks Eichmann if the "Final
Solution" would have unrolled differently had their been "civic
responsibility", the judge is very clearly interested in whether
people like Eichmann, who essentially bear no ill will whatsoever
towards Jews and are simply doing a job that is somewhat more
lucrative and promising than selling oil, would want to change
job if they were confronted with the kind of civic resistance that
the "Final Solution" encountered in, say, Denmark or Serbia or
Bulgaria (where local populations actively resisted the attempt to
round up Jews).
Eichmann makes no attempt to understand the question. He simply
had it benefited from sufficient hierarchical organization, it
undoubtedly have been more efficient and more efficiacious. But of
course the result is nonsense, because in this case "X" is
a form of resistance to hierarchical organization. Eichmann does
speak German; instead, German speaks him.
Bateson remarks that the reason why keeping a room tidy requires
work, but it just gets untidy by itself is simple entropy; there
many more ways of being untidy than there are of being tidy (and
when he says this, what he is really showing us--almost
perfectly--is the big difference between the way we mediate reality
and the way reality, objectively, really is). In the same way,
grammatical requires work, because there are infinitely many
being ungrammatical and relatively fewer ways of being grammatical.
We can, of course, save work by replacing one psychological
(grammaticality) with another (memory), but when we do this run up
against Arendt's biggest problem.
Arendt is shocked that Eichmann uses Kant to justify his actions
even gives a reasonably good, though no doubt memorized, version of
the Categorical Imperative. She concludes that there are simply
many ways of being evil, and relatively few of being good. The only
reliable method of telling the difference is to think and speak for
yourself. Paradoxically, or perhaps not so, this is something we do
not do well unless we actually listen to others and respond to them
in sentences that cannot be readily Googled.
Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
simply want to advance their career, So the I want people to
for themselves. B
On 4 April 2014 01:35, mike cole <email@example.com> wrote:
I believe David is commenting on Joseph's exhortation that we
our time more usefully, Michael.
hangin' out in southern california.
On Thu, Apr 3, 2014 at 2:15 AM, Michael <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote:
But what exactly does your "little experiment" mean?
Dr. Michael G. Levykh, Ph.D.
Therapist, Affective Speech Remediation
Voice Teacher, Vocal Coach
Sharpening the Ear for Better Communication
and Socially Appropriate Behaviour
[mailto:email@example.com] On Behalf Of David
Sent: April-02-14 11:48 PM
To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: vygotsky's theory and symbolic
I just tried a little experiment. I googled "Think for yourself!"
relevant!" and "Be useful!" to see how many times someone has
more or less, these exact sentiments in these exact words.
Here's what I found:
"Be useful!" 4,030,020 matches in .32 seconds.
"Be relevant!" 607,000,000 in 0.26 seconds. (Much easier to
"Think for yourself!" 717 million mentions in only .040 seconds!
Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
On 3 April 2014 11:24, Lois Holzman
I'd like to know more about you. I appreciate your comment on
Director, East Side Institute for Group & Short Term
104-106 South Oxford Street
Brooklyn, New York 11217
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Tel. +1.212.941.8906 x324
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On Apr 2, 2014, at 12:49 PM, Joseph Gilbert
May I suggest that you-all emphasize your own questioning and
rather than mainly referring to great innovators and thinkers of
By concentrating on what has already been said by recognized
one stays mired in the past. It is natural for intelligent,
conscious beings to have their own wonderings/questions. What are
yours? Do you wish to remake the world in any way? Would you like
to have a peaceful planet
your grandchildren? What needs to be done in order to achieve
that? How about a new perception, an updated world-view, based
upon our best
knowledge of human nature? Just as many Christians look backward
chart their course, academicians in this current corporate state
remain stuck in the already accepted arguments and premises
established long ago. Please break free and really accomplish
something useful with your wealth of knowledge rather than mostly
engaging in "small talk" among
cohorts in an isolated i
vory tower. We (humanity) need all the help we can get. It seems
you should be able to do more than split hairs among yourselves
while the real
the world go unaddressed. Get back to the basics and build from
there, using what you really believe to be true as your
for yourselves! Be original! Be relevant! Be useful!
On Apr 2, 2014, at 8:27 AM, mike cole <firstname.lastname@example.org>
Seems like you nailed it, Robert, (and Benjamin read it
The lesson I take away from this is that we are all "so-called
virtue of the fact that our consciousness is mediated through
imagined present never precisely matches the encountered
In so far as there is an antidote to this characteristic of
as I can figure out, it is develop cultural practices that
"critical" in that they diverge from the common imaginary
criticized, the preferred next step would be to test out your
world in practice in order to discover its flaws.
What do others conclude?
On Tue, Apr 1, 2014 at 7:56 PM, Robert Lake
See highlighted phrase below :-).
Marx-Engels Correspondence 1893
Engels to Franz Mehring Abstract
Source: *Marx and Engels Correspondence*;
Publisher: International Publishers (1968);
First Published: *Gestamtausgabe*;
Translated: Donna Torr;
HTML Markup: Sally Ryan.
London, July 14, 1893
Today is my first opportunity to thank you for the *Lessing
were kind enough to send me. I did not want to reply with a
acknowledgment of receipt of the book but intended at the
you something about it, about its contents. Hence the delay.
I shall begin at the end -- the appendix on historical
you have described the main things excellently and for any
person convincingly. If I find anything to object to it is
attribute more credit to me than I deserve, even if I
which I might possibly have found out for myself - in time -
with his more rapid *coup d'oeil* (grasp) and wider vision
more quickly. When one has the good fortune to work for forty
man like Marx, one does not usually get the recognition one
deserves during his lifetime. Then if the greater man dies,
easily gets overrated, and this seems to me to be just my
history will set all this right in the end and by that time
safely round the corner and know nothing more about anything.
Otherwise there is only one other point lacking, which,
always failed to stress enough in our writings and in regard
are all equally guilty. That is to say, we all laid, and
the main emphasis, in the first place, on the *derivation* of
juridical and other ideological notions, and of actions
medium of these notions, from basic economic facts. But in so
neglected the formal side -- the ways and means by which
etc., come about -- for the sake of the content. This has
adversaries a welcome opportunity for misunderstandings, of
Barth is a striking example.
Ideology is a process accomplished by the so-called thinker
indeed, but with a false consciousness.
On Tue, Apr 1, 2014 at 9:24 PM, Martin John Packer
Wikipedia attributes the phase to Engels.
On Apr 1, 2014, at 8:13 PM, Douglas Williams
The term false consciousness is from Walter Benjamin in a
Siegfried Kracauer's Die Angestellten, drawing from Marx.
is described in terms of alienation and estrangement from
From: Andy Blunden <email@example.com>
To: "eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity"
Sent: Tuesday, April 1, 2014 5:14 PM
Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: vygotsky's theory and symbolic
Tom, so far as I know, the term "false consciousness" was
feminists in the 1970s and was never used by Marx, and I
concept is consistent with his ideas, as expressed in the
Feuerbach which you quoted, for example.
Tom Richardson wrote:
... In the first place, it should be noted that Marx, like
Freud, believed that most of what men consciously think is
consciousness, is ideology and rationalization; that the
of man's actions are unconscious to him.