[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[Xmca-l] Re: Questioning universal core emotions



(First of all--many thanks to Peter and above all to Helen, who often lurks
in these waters--I just read the preview, and I'm ordering her wonderful
book for our library and our teachers.)

A while ago there was some discussion on xmca about whether graphic
descriptions of torture should carry a warning. I think Jen and I were
alone in arguing that they probably should, because some people really do
have uncontrollable reactions to verbal stimuli. If you are one such, this
post does contain such, so skip it or at least postpone it to well after
breakfast.

I certainly agree with Andy that he is confusing, and to the extent that my
mental activity is the product of his verbal stimuli, I suppose that makes
me, by his definition, very confused. He writes:

"Obviously (?) what is happening on my auditory nerves is the same all the
time, but according to whether my attention is on it (?), it (??) exists
or doesn't, for me. (Thank Christ! Some people find it (???) hard to ignore
and go into therapy to learn how to ignore it (????)."

It's not at all obvious to me that the word "it" refers to the same thing
here. My (confused-by-Andy) interpretation is that the first time Andy says
"it" he means what is happening on the auditory nerves, but the second time
he uses it he means something like what is happening on the auditory nerves
and is contained in Andy's working attention. But with the words "for me"
(perhaps they should really be "by me") the issue of whether the sufferer's
working attention is under volitional control arises, and that is where
Vygotskyan psychology really begins. We may confidently surmise that Christ
will have very little to do with his explanation (Vygotsky being Jewish).

Have a listen to Mariss Janssons, conducting Smetana's well-known overture
to his comic opera, the Bartered Bride:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CmHqslLbpyY

Notice how, after the initial theme, the noodling of the strings gradually
rises and falls (in some versions it actually disappears, but it's clear
from the score that this was not Smetana's intention, and I think the
Berlin Phil has it just about right here). At first it was thought that
Smetana copped this noodling from a folk tune, along with almost all the
themes of the opera that was to follow (unlike most overtures, this one was
written first, and it has a planning function rather than serving as a
waste basket or an abstract).. No such folk tune was ever found, either in
Smetana's archives or in the wild. However, similar noodlings occur in
almost all of his music, and they reach a crescendo in his later
productions when he suffered so much from tinnitus that in 1874 he resigned
his position as director of the Prague Opera and repair to an insane asylum
for treatment and death.

This is an early work--well before Smetana spoke of his tinnitus, and
certainly well before he spoke of his tinnitus driving him in the direction
of suicide. But I think we can say that when we listen that his tinnitus
exists for us, and that therefore it probably existed for him as well. If
Andy says that it does not, I think that what this shows is that Andy has a
model of the mind rather similar to that of Hilary Putnam (and Putnam
acribes this model to Thomas Aquinas): the mind simply contains a kind of
processor and whatever happens to be in its working memory and working
attention at the moment, with all the other material offloaded into
artifacts, including a kind of random access memory located somewhere in
the brain.

The word "exist", containing as it does the word "it", is a little
unfortunate here for two reasons. First of all, unlike most uses of the
verb "to be", it's intransitive: it implies only one "be-er". Secondly,
unlike the verb "to become" it implies a discontinuity: something either
exists or it doesn't. When I listen to the results of Smetana's
tinnitus, my relation to it is much more like any other use of "to
be"--there are at least two be-ers, or one be-er and one be-ed, or one
be-er and one be-ing (as in "it is soft/loud (attribute)" or "it is a kind
of dance (classifier)" or "it is the Overture to the Bartered
Bride (identifier)". Behind that second "be-er"--attribute, classifier, or
identifier--I find a long chain of other be-ers, including, eventually,
poor old Bedrich Smetana and his tintinnabulations.

When I was in my early twenties, I hitch-hiked through Homs in Syria (the
town which was yesterday evacuated to government forces, and which some say
gave its name to "hummus"). Then, as now, northern Syria was in revolt,
with some areas held by the Muslim Brotherhood and others by a coalition of
more secular groups. There was also a very violent government-backed
milita, led by the president's brother Rifaat Assad, charged with taking
back control of Homs, Hama (later virtually wiped off the map) and Aleppo.
I was arrested, along with some friends in the Riyad Turk faction of the
Syrian Communist Party who had--I thought mistakenly--supported the revolt.

Because I had an American passport, it was almost immediately realized,
even in the heat of war, that I was not really torturable. Although there
was a lot of fighting and confusion (about eight thousand people were
killed that day, I later learned) I think that the militia men never lost
sight of this crucial fact. For example, I spent the first few hours of my
confinement handcuffed to a friend while they removed his fingernails with
pliers. My blindfold was removed during the operation, because the police
obviously wanted me to witness it. But I still have all my fingernails to
this day.

I spent the next couple of months in a series of prisons, first in Aleppo
and then in Damascus. In Aleppo I was in a big common cell, with sixty
other prisoners, including both Muslim Brothers and Communists. There
was  a cell outside where they would take us, one by one, for
waterboarding. But I was never taken--and the nickname that my cellmates
gave me ("Al Azhnavi", or "the outsider") suggested that I was, as Graham
Greene would have said, not a member of the torturable class. I certainly
felt that I was not torturable; I noticed that the feelings I had listening
to torture, even torture of my friends and comrades, was very different
from the feelings I had the night that the Muslim Brotherhood stormed the
prison and fired their weapons into our cells, apparently oblivious to the
fact that their own comrades were inside. Neither was the effect of direct
sensation, but I would certainly not say that either was voluntary.

In Damascus I was in solitary for fifty-five days, but it was in a cell
underneath an interrogation room where they administered "dullab" (that is,
they put you in a blown up inner-tube and beat the bottoms of your feet and
genitals with a truncheon). Again, the feelings I had listening to the
sessions of "dullab" were not under my voluntary control, yet they were
still very different from the feelings that the direct participants had.
After solitary I was moved back to a common cell with several dozen other
prisoners (including non-politicals). I suffered a lot from huge boils
under my skin (these are the only scars I have from the whole experience to
this day) and one day the police took me out and drove me across town--to a
doctor, blindfolded (we were always blindfolded when we taken out of the
prison, because the location of the prisons was supposed to be secret). The
doctor took one look at me, told the police that I had a bad case of "acne
vulgaris", and I was taken back to prison. On the way back, we stopped at a
very large garbage pit, and led me out. I stood there for a while, not
noticing much except a bad smell, and then I heard a sound like an M-80
going off next to my head and I naturally jumped at the noise. The cops had
a good laugh, and then they put me back into the back of the car,
complimenting on my bravery.  It was only when I got back to the cell
that I was told that the cops thought they were doing a mock execution.

Amnesty International in London later asked me if I had been tortured. I
remember being rather astonished by the question. Actually, I was just too
stupid and too convinced of my own untorturability to be tortured
psychologically, and the cops were already convinced that they might have
to release me soon, so they apparently had to desist from the other kind.
But the experiences were certainly not voluntary, and I was always
conscious of the precise degree to which they were not under my control (in
that sense I think they were very different, both from Andy's tinnitus and
from the voluntary rituals that Paul is describing).

In "Thinking and Speech" Vygotsky describes the planes through which an
intending becomes a thinking and a thinking becomes a saying--inner or
outer. I think that we can probably isolate similar planes of pain,
feeling, sensation, and emotion, and that the process is probably quite
similar, with only the final plane really under voluntary control (and then
only through the process of mastering it "from the outside", first through
the wordings of others and then through our own word meanings). That's why
I think that pain, sensation, feeling, and emotion must lie somewhere on a
continuum from an experience which is shared with animals and universal in
a biological sense to an experience that is now entirely mediated by word
meanings. Yet the fact that you are reading this, and sharing some of the
horror I felt, suggests to me that, in the first place, they are linked as
well as distinct; in the second place, that calling the former "objective"
and the latter "subjective" is highly misleading (and the opposite is in
some ways more true), and, (finally!) that for humans, but only for us,
emotion is no less universal than pain.

David Kellogg
Hankuk University of Foreign Studies




On 8 May 2014 19:49, Dr. Paul C. Mocombe <pmocombe@mocombeian.com> wrote:

> David,
>
> How would you interpret self mutilation and sacrifice for a god would that
> be torture?  This argument appears to rest on whether it is an etic or emic
> view.
>
>
> Dr. Paul C. Mocombe
> President
> The Mocombeian Foundation, Inc.
> www.mocombeian.com
> www.readingroomcurriculum.com
> www.paulcmocombe.info
>
> <div>-------- Original message --------</div><div>From: David Kellogg <
> dkellogg60@gmail.com> </div><div>Date:05/07/2014  7:44 PM  (GMT-05:00)
> </div><div>To: Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net>,"eXtended Mind, Culture,
> Activity" <xmca-l@mailman.ucsd.edu> </div><div>Subject: [Xmca-l] Re:
> Questioning universal core emotions </div><div>
> </div>Andy--
>
> Sorry--I'm not following. You are saying that your tintinnatus only exists
> when you are interpreting it, yes? And the same thing goes for, say,
> Smetana's tintinnatus, which appears, without his knowledge, in many of his
> operas and which eventually drove him mad?
>
> What about torture? You are arguing that torture only exists when we
> interpret it as torture? I can tell you--from some first hand observations
> made in the early eighties--that it ain't so.
>
> David Kellogg
> Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
>
>
> On 7 May 2014 10:35, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:
>
> > David, I have tinnitus. That is, 24/7 there is a ringing in my ear. You
> > could ask me any moment if it is there and I would have to confirm, I
> hear
> > it. (I hear it now, as I write). But 99.99% of the time "it does not
> exist
> > for me." Obviously what is happening on my auditory nerves is the same
> all
> > the time, but according to whether my attention is on it, it exists or
> > doesn't, for me. (Thank Christ! Some people find it hard to ignore and go
> > into therapy to learn how to ignore it).
> > You call that idealism? OK. Then I am happy to wear the label.
> >
> https://www.academia.edu/1968768/Hegels_Psychology_-_The_Subjective_Spirit
> >
> > And on the matter of emotion and feeling. I was just following Manfred
> > Holodynski's usage of these terms.
> > http://lchc.ucsd.edu/MCA/Journal/pdfs/20-1-holodynski.pdf
> > Admittedly, different writers use "feeling" and "emotion" in opposite
> > senses. "Expression" is something else again.
> > Andy
> > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> > *Andy Blunden*
> > http://home.mira.net/~andy/
> >
> >
> > David Kellogg wrote:
> >
> >> I think that Barrett is taking an easy pot-shot at the founding
> >> fathers--Titchener, James, and Wundt--who believed in six fundamental,
> >> irreducible emotions and who set out to isolate them in laboratories and
> >> describe them in minute detail. But as Mike says, I think the problem is
> >> methodological, or even definitional.
> >>
> >> And to me the real problem is not the word "sensation", or "feeling", or
> >> "emotion". I am perfectly willing to accept that for example pain is a
> >> biological universal (something we share with other species, in fact),
> and
> >> that "sensation" is somewhat less so, at least biologically (although I
> >> think Andy's idea that nothing remains when we abstract away the
> >> interpretation of sensation is almost chemically pure idealism, on a par
> >> with his statement that material reality is "what is given to us"). I
> >> agree
> >> with Elinami: there are higher emotions which are highly mediated by
> >> language (Elinami reminds me of this by including a snippet of Fet that
> I
> >> once translated into English at the bottom of her email, and when I read
> >> it
> >> I experience almost the exact feeling I had while translating it,
> >> including
> >> a certain dissatisfaction with the facile sing-song of the second line).
> >> But I am not at all sure that the fact of language mediation means that
> >> they are somehow more subjective and less universal.
> >>
> >> For most people, as soon as we say something is mediated by language,
> this
> >> implies that it cannot be universal. For example, even I find myself
> >> shaking my head when I read that Barrett and her group went through
> >> several
> >> translators in the course of their fieldwork. If you are using a
> >> translator, and you are doing linguistic research, in what sense are you
> >> doing fieldwork? (I know, in the sense that you are in the field and you
> >> can tell what people are feeling by their intonation--but of course
> that's
> >> exactly what this fieldwork is trying to disprove!)
> >>
> >> Vygotsky says (in Lecture Number Two of his "Lectures on Pedology",
> which
> >> we are currently translating) that what distinguishes speech from every
> >> other sound in nature is signifying. That seems rather banal until you
> put
> >> it in context. We know that children often assume that animals that make
> >> noises are "talking" to each other, and even Binet and Ribot believed
> that
> >> if somehow we knew the grammar and vocabulary then we could do as Doctor
> >> Doolittle did (or perhaps do as Doctor Ouch did in Chukovsky's version
> of
> >> the story for Russian children) and "talk to the animals".
> >>
> >> It wasn't until Wittgenstein that anybody made the point that if a lion
> >> could talk we would simply not be able to understand it, because we
> would
> >> not be able to grasp the experiences to which the lion's speech referred
> >> (e.g. when the lion refers to your or me, his "meaning" probably
> includes
> >> an attractive meaty odor). One of the less pleasant features of the
> >> domestic life of the lion is that after giving birth to cubs, the
> lioness
> >> has to keep the the male lion from devouring the cubs. We may share pain
> >> with lions, but we do not share emotions.
> >>
> >> For Vygotsky--who was working in the great tradition of Spinoza and
> >> Vico--the fact of signifying did not mean that language was somehow
> >> "subjective" and thus not even potentially universal. Quite the
> contrary.
> >> I
> >> think that for Vygotsky signifying is even more objective than, say,
> >> seeing. This isn't simply because unlike seeing (and unlike pain),
> >> signifying MUST be shared. As Halliday says, what distinguishes language
> >> as
> >> language is that language does not contain the conditions for its own
> >> understanding; unlike a scream of pain or a giggle of laughter or a sob
> of
> >> unhappiness, the social relations by which language functions as
> language
> >> are quite external to it, like money (what makes gold a metal is in the
> >> gold, but what makes gold money is not, as we can clearly see in the
> >> example of paper money).
> >>
> >> To me, what this suggests is that higher emotions are not, potentially,
> >> less universal than lower ones. On the contrary--as the example of Himba
> >> ancestor worship indicates--it suggests that higher emotions are
> actually
> >> more universal, precisely because they are intrinsically sharable. It
> >> seems
> >> that all human cultures treat ancestors as important in some way (and no
> >> lions do; lionesses also have to guard against hungry grandmothers). So
> I
> >> think reverence for ancestors, like language, may be a precondition for
> >> culture. Together with language, it is rather like the other great
> >> bifurcations in phylogenesis: inanimate-animate, vegetable-animal,
> >> nonarticulate animal-articulate animal. Each great bifurcation is messy,
> >> non-empirical, but ultimately quite universal as far as the branch
> >> concerned goes in time and in space. It is, of course, true that there
> is
> >> no universal language, but that is simply our way of ensuring that
> >> language
> >> is universally human.
> >>
> >> David Kellogg
> >> Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
> >>
> >>
> >>
> >>
> >> On 7 May 2014 07:15, Greg Thompson <greg.a.thompson@gmail.com> wrote:
> >>
> >>
> >>
> >>> and speaking to my previous point about problems with methods for
> >>> studying
> >>> this kind of thing, consider the following from the Psy Science piece
> >>> that
> >>> Mike forwarded:
> >>>
> >>> "Himba participants appeared to have a cultural tendency to describe
> >>> vocalizations in behavioral terms initially; that is, on most trials,
> >>> they
> >>> first identified the action instead of making a mental-state
> inference….
> >>> For example, instead of describing a vocalization as fearful, they
> often
> >>> used a term that translates to 'scream.'" (p. 913).
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> Woohoo!
> >>>
> >>> -greg
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>> On Tue, May 6, 2014 at 3:03 PM, mike cole <lchcmike@gmail.com> wrote:
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> Hi Ed.
> >>>>
> >>>> I started the trouble here by posting the following story which
> >>>> purported
> >>>> to report on the work of Lisa Barrett.
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>> http://www.psypost.org/2014/03/the-six-universal-facial-
> >>> expressions-are-not-universal-cross-cultural-study-shows-23471
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> That post started a discussion that began with methodology and appears
> >>>> to
> >>>> have morphed into personal views of the matter.
> >>>>
> >>>> I promised in the original post to find the article referred to in the
> >>>> story, but got caught up in other matters and let it go. I should have
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>> done
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> so BEFORE I posted the story, which was, in my view now, misleading
> with
> >>>> respect, at least, to this published paper. The paper in Emotion has
> not
> >>>> appeared so far as I can tell.
> >>>>
> >>>> Back to methodology?
> >>>> mike
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>> On Tue, May 6, 2014 at 1:19 PM, Ed Wall <ewall@umich.edu> wrote:
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> Perhaps of interest is Amelie Rorty's edited volume Explaining
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>> Emotions.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> In any case, emotion is a large category as is expression.
> >>>>>
> >>>>> In any case, I admit to some confusion. Is the ongoing conversation
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>> about
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> 'expressing' emotion or about 'feellng' or, perhaps, 'experiencing'
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>> emotion.
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> Ed Wall
> >>>>>
> >>>>> On May 6, 2014, at  2:28 PM, Elinami Swai wrote:
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> I believe that pain, just like feeling is universal. But I also
> >>>>>> believe that emotion (which we can also call expression) is learned
> >>>>>> and thus may differ from one individual to another. We make
> >>>>>> interpretations of emotion and expression from our own points of
> >>>>>>
> >>>>>>
> >>>>> view.
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> On 5/6/14, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:
> >>>>>>
> >>>>>>
> >>>>>>> David, although I am sure that sensations cannot be taken as
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>> universal
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> either, since it is unlikely that there is anything remaining after
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>> the
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> interprettion of the "sensation" is abstracted. However, it is
> >>>>>>> nonetheless a different claim to say that human sensation is not
> >>>>>>> universal, as to say human emotion (by which is meant I think
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>> "feeling")
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> is not universal. Let's suppose all are experiencing pain: they are
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>> all
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> clearly feeling different about it.
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>> Or was that your point?
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>> Andy
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>> ------------------------------------------------------------
> >>>> ------------
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> *Andy Blunden*
> >>>>>>> http://home.mira.net/~andy/
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>> David Kellogg wrote:
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> Suppose I put together a set of pictures of people undergoing
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>> torture,
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> in
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> which some people appeared to be experiencing the torture
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>> stoically,
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> others
> >>>>>>>> with resignation, still others with agony, and some with something
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>> that
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> appears to be laughter.
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> I think I could probably crop the photographs and pose questions
> in
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>> such
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> a
> >>>>>>>> way that I could very convincingly demonstrate that pain is not a
> >>>>>>>> universal
> >>>>>>>> human sensation. Not only that, I could probably put together a
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>> sorting
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> exercise that would come to the same conclusion.
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> David Kellogg
> >>>>>>>> Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> On 5 May 2014 01:24, Greg Thompson <greg.a.thompson@gmail.com>
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>> wrote:
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> I have a colleague down the hall, David Crandall, that has been
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> working
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> among the Himba for almost 30 years. I also have three students
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> headed
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> to
> >>>>>>>>> do research among the Himba in a month. So I've been picking up
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> some
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> interesting details about the Himba.
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> It seems like it is true that they have increasingly had contact
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> with
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> Western culture, as evidenced by recent protests in some of the
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> larger
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> cities that were staged by Himba opposed to the building of a dam
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> that
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> would cause flooding of some of the burial sites of their
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> ancestors
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> (
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> http://www.huntingtonnews.net/84854).
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> At the same time, they are non-numerate people that lack some of
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> the
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> key
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> Western institutions where kids learn (oddly enough) about
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> "emotions"
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> (think of those pictures of happy and sad faces that Western
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> schooling
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> takes into the classroom as the MEANS by which they teach
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> literacy -
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> these
> >>>>>>>>> means of teaching literacy always entail certain cultural ends -
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> such
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> as
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> "emotion" - concepts that are not emic concepts).
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> Among the western institutions that the Himba lack, the Himba
> lack
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> the
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> Western model of schooling (one of my students is doing research
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> on
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> this
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> very issue). It is only in the last 15 years or so that Himba have
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> begun
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> sending their children to school, and now only in small numbers.
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> The
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> Himba
> >>>>>>>>> are very skeptical of schools since, in their opinion, the
> schools
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> don't
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> teach their children anything worthwhile. Knowing how to count is
> >>>>>>>>> unimportant to them since although they are non-numerate they are
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> able
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> to
> >>>>>>>>> keep track of large herds of cattle because they know each of
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> their
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> cattle
> >>>>>>>>> individually and can recognize when one is missing. But what
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> really
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> matters
> >>>>>>>>> are things like knowing how to properly honor one's ancestors. If
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> one
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> fails
> >>>>>>>>> to do that properly, then then ancestors will cause bad things to
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> happen
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> to
> >>>>>>>>> oneself. That is much more important than knowing how to count.
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> Carol, I also agree with your concerns with the methodology of
> the
> >>>>>>>>> study,
> >>>>>>>>> it may not be reasonable to assume that this research is the same
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> as
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> the
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> Ekman tasks and of-course it is a Western-type task (but one might
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> argue
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> that it is less so than the Ekman tasks since it is more open,
> >>>>>>>>> arguable).
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> So Carol, I wonder what conclusions you would draw from your
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> critique.
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> Are
> >>>>>>>>> emotions universal?
> >>>>>>>>> I wonder if there is a further possibility that these
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> psychologists
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> are
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> missing. Is it possible that "emotions" are not universal in
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> quite a
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> different sense? Perhaps that the very category of "emotion" is
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> not
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> universal?
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> I think this research points in that direction - when viewing a
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> picture
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> of
> >>>>>>>>> a face, people do not necessarily assume that the person in the
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> picture
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> is
> >>>>>>>>> "emoting". I assume that this would be true among Westerners as
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> well,
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> but
> >>>>>>>>> that possibility doesn't present itself in the research
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> methodology
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> since
> >>>>>>>>> Westerners are asked "what emotion is this?" The task is already
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> defined
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> by
> >>>>>>>>> the domain called "emotion" (with which they are already very
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> familiar).
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> Anthropologists have done great work to show the problems with
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> taking
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> Western defined domains into non-Western contexts (e.g. the domain
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> of
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> "kinship" - David Schneider, the domain of "color" - John Lucy).
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> The
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> argument is that even though this research turns up results that
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> seem
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> to
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> suggest that the domains are real even in non-Western contexts,
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> the
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> findings are plagued by the fact that they assume these domains
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> and
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> force
> >>>>>>>>> these non-Western subjects into choosing within the pre-defined
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> domain.
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> But then again, perhaps "emotion" is a universal category?
> >>>>>>>>> -greg
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> On Sun, May 4, 2014 at 7:55 AM, Carol Macdonald <
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>> carolmacdon@gmail.com
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> wrote:
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>> Well Mike
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>> I am here working in Namibia for the year, and I would like to
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> know
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> where
> >>>>>>>>>> these Himba people are.  I mean the ones referred to in the
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> article:
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> I
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> am
> >>>>>>>>>> not sure they are *so *isolated - they are well recognised as
> one
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> of
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> the
> >>>>>>>>>> language groups.  And I think there is also an elephant in the
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> room
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> here.
> >>>>>>>>>> This is a western-type task, and Luria would have been quick to
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> point
> >>>>
> >>>>
> >>>>> that
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>> out. What makes this woman think that this task would be the
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> equivalent
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>> to
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>> the others.
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>> Just a couple of basic principles to cast a small aspersion on
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> this
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> research.
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>> Carol
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>> On 4 May 2014 14:16, mike cole <lchcmike@gmail.com> wrote:
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>> Perhaps of interest
> >>>>>>>>>>> mike
> >>>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>> http://www.psypost.org/2014/03/the-six-universal-facial-
> >>> expressions-are-not-universal-cross-cultural-study-shows-23471
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> --
> >>>>>>>>>> Carol A  Macdonald Ph D (Edin)
> >>>>>>>>>> Developmental psycholinguist
> >>>>>>>>>> Academic, Researcher,  and Editor
> >>>>>>>>>> Honorary Research Fellow: Department of Linguistics, Unisa
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>> --
> >>>>>>>>> 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
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>>>
> >>>>>> --
> >>>>>> Dr. Elinami Swai
> >>>>>> Senior Lecturer
> >>>>>> Associate Dean
> >>>>>> Coordinator, Postgraduate Studies
> >>>>>> Faculty of Education
> >>>>>> Open University of Tanzania
> >>>>>> P.O.Box 23409
> >>>>>> Dar-Es-Salaam
> >>>>>> Tell:255-022-2668992/2668820/2668445/26687455
> >>>>>> Fax:022-2668759
> >>>>>> Cell: (255) 076-722-8353; (255) 068-722-8353
> >>>>>>
> >>>>>>
> >>>>>>
> >>>>>
> http://www.amazon.com/Beyond-Womens-Empowerment-Africa-Dislocation/dp/
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>> 0230102484
> >>>>>>        ...this faith will still deliver
> >>>>>>        If you live it first to last
> >>>>>>        Not everything which blooms must
> >>>>>>        wither.
> >>>>>>        Not all that was is past
> >>>>>>
> >>>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>>
> >>>>
> >>> --
> >>> 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
> >>>
> >>>
> >>>
> >>
> >>
> >>
> >
> >
>
>