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[Xmca-l] Re: mediate perception and direct perception

he, he, Huw!
For me, reduction, simplification and typology are the very problems that need to be remedied by clarification! and I really don't think obfuscation is ever helpful, generally being used to obscure the genesis of phenomena. Distinction is not equal to separation. I really don't know what you are referring to with product and history. Perhaps you could explain?
*Andy Blunden*

Huw Lloyd wrote:
I agree about precision, but not with a call for "clarity". Reduction to clarity is a projection or reification of the need for simplicity. Simplicity usually entails typologies or other simplistic devices which prevent the conception and perception of genetic relations. Actually in cases such as these we are interested in (clarifying) the entanglements between artefacts and mind. I think It would be equally appropriate and meaning-prompting to state that one needs to obfuscate (see darkly) too.

I think it is this "need for simplification" which leads me to disagree with the 2nd paragraph. For example, why separate the act from its production and history? Of course, if one had the discipline to de-couple clarity from modes of simplicity, then we wouldn't have the problem.


On 14 September 2014 07:02, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net>> wrote:

    My impression, Greg and David Ki, is that in the CHAT tradition
    specifically, as opposed to the English language in general,
    mediation refers to *artefact-mediation*. Of course, every action
    is both mediated and immediate, and in many discursive contexts,
    "mediation" is a concept which may be evoked quite legitimately,
    but with no special significant for the use of CHAT. In social
    theory, for example, mediation of activities by other activities
    or institutions is as ubiquitous as mediation of actions by
    artefacts is in the domain of psychology. But if the topic is
    psychology, I think artefact-mediation is so central, that I
    prefer to spell it out and use the term "artefact-mediated" rather
    than the vague term "mediated".

    I have come across usages like "mediated by such-and-such a
    concept." Like Alice in Wonderland one can use words to mean what
    you like, but I find a formulation like this in the context of
    CHAT problematic, because it is using the idea of "mediation" in
    the most general sense in a way which obscures the fact that a
    concept is not immediately present in any act of communication or
    any other act, and therefore *cannot mediate actions*. Artefacts,
    such as spoken words, which may be signs for a concept, can of
    course mediate an act of communication. But the point is that a
    word is not universally and unproblematically a sign for any one
    concept. It means different things to different people. Concepts
    are not artefacts. Artefacts are universal in their materiality,
    but particular in their meaning. So when we have a concept in mind
    when we use a word in communication, the communication is mediated
    by the word not the concept, and it is a mistake not to be aware
    of that.

    So I would prefer it if "mediation" were always used in qualified
    way so that its specific meaning is made clear.

    PS. And David Ki is completely right in his comment, too.
    *Andy Blunden*

    Greg Thompson wrote:

        Does "mediation" only apply to language and culture?

        Or does it include nerve fibers? (in which case we would need
        to include

        And does it include our socio-contextual surround as in
        Bateson's man with
        the stick? (in which case, we would need to include newborns).

        Just wonderin'.


        On Sat, Sep 13, 2014 at 2:48 PM, David H Kirshner
        <dkirsh@lsu.edu <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu>> wrote:

            Thanks for replies.
            I'm recalling several years ago Jim Greeno decided to stop
            talking about
            situated cognition because the pragmatics of adjectival
            use implies there
            has to be a contrasting non-situated cognition. He now
            speaks of
            situativity theory. It seems, with the exception of
            physical reflexes (and
            perhaps pre-conscious infant activity), all human action
            is mediated (and
            perhaps a lot of non-human action, as well). So, it's
            worth noting that
            "mediated action" doesn't specify a kind of action, but
            rather a
            theoretical assumption about all human action; though
            there seems to be
            some variation in interpretation of what that assumption