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[Xmca-l] Re: CHAT Discourse



David,
I'd note that in addition to Andy's introduction, there was a "spirited"
contribution (or two or three...) that use empirical stuff to contribute to
theory.
-greg



On Tue, Sep 16, 2014 at 2:06 AM, David H Kirshner <dkirsh@lsu.edu> wrote:

> Andy,
>
>
>
> Thanks for the link to the TOC of your edited volume, which perhaps
> unintentionally illustrates my point that empirical studies using
> CHAT/sociocultural theory generally aren't intended as contributions to
> theory, per se; as you noted, the affordances for theorizing were brought
> out by you, rather than by the authors as part of their motive for
> producing the empirical work.
>
>
>
> I've hung out with cognitive psychologists quite a bit, and there's a very
> clear demarcation between applied studies which utilize cognitive theory
> for applicative purposes and pure studies whose sole raison d'être is to
> inform theory. Furthermore, it is a fairly rare occurrence for anyone to
> attempt to address theory in any other way than through the lens of
> empirical studies.
>
>
>
> My own experience of this community includes appreciation of the tight
> logic of their theorizing, and also of the inventiveness of researchers in
> generating truly provocative data that they are then forced to contend. But
> it also includes a sense of frustration with the absence of any critique of
> or input to theory from outside of the little studies that, one after
> another, niggle away at the theoretical infrastructure. Excluded, here, are
> not only philosophical inputs to theory, but even broader methodological
> constraints regarding the character of good theories. (My own grounding in
> mathematical theorizing includes a deliciously salient sense of the
> “elegance” that makes a theory truly admirable and worthy.)
>
>
>
> Somehow, it seems noteworthy that CHAT/sociocultural psychology—whatever
> its virtues—isn’t organized like other branches of psychology (e.g.,
> behavioral, cognitive, developmental) with respect to the role of empirical
> data in theory construction. Andy, in your response to Jenna, you described
> science as an objective practice that “is not dependant on what you and I,
> writing here on xmca in 2014, says it is.” The question all this raises is
> whether CHAT/sociocultural psychology actually qualifies as a scientific
> practice.
>
>
>
> David
>
>
>
>
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu [mailto:
> xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu] On Behalf Of Andy Blunden
> Sent: Monday, September 15, 2014 7:59 PM
> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: CHAT Discourse
>
>
>
> David, in the recently published book, "Collaborative Projects. An
> Interdisciplinary Study," authors were invited to submit studies with
> empirical content (in the sense in which you are using the word) which
> illustrated the use of the concept of "project" within CHAT.
>
>
>
>
> https://www.academia.edu/6756231/Collaborative_Projects._An_Interdisciplinary_Study
>
>
>
> As you can see from the Table of Contents, more than a dozen different
> practical studies were contributed, and I am satisfied that the collection
> functioned to illuminate the philosophical issues about the nature of "an
> activity," and its ue as a unit of analysis, even though they are only
> explicitly addressed in the long Introduction.
>
>
>
> Andy
>
>
>
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> *Andy Blunden*
>
> http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
>
>
>
>
>
> David H Kirshner wrote:
>
> > Mike,
>
> >
>
> > Clearly, as in Katherine Neal's response, and in MCA, CHAT/sociocultural
> theory informs empirical research.
>
> > What's less clear is that empirical research informs CHAT/sociocultural
> theorizing.
>
> > Not quite sure what to make of that.
>
> >
>
> > David
>
> >
>
> >
>
> > -----Original Message-----
>
> > From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu
>
> > [mailto:xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu] On Behalf Of mike cole
>
> > Sent: Monday, September 15, 2014 11:15 AM
>
> > To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
>
> > Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: CHAT Discourse
>
> >
>
> > Your followup comment is closely related to the second part of your
> initiating message, David. So i will respond in line.
>
> >
>
> > Firstly, I think it would be helpful to distinguish between MCA and xmca.
>
> > The idea behind xmca was to provide a discussion forum for articles that
> appear in MCA so that instead of authors having to wait 2+ years for
> feedback on their ideas (which rarely comes, even then!), we could discuss
> the published work and learn from it in a timely manner. By an large, that
> effort has, in my opinion, failed. Thanks to the recent decision to have
> the editors pick out articles for discussion which include the author(s) in
> the discussion, this situation has been somewhat mitigated. But only
> somewhat. xma discussions have all the characteristics of Vygotskian
> chaining, as a rule.
>
> >
>
> > Secondly, when I take down a bundle of recent MCA issues and look at the
> titles, they at least sound like they are about empirical matters ranging
> across a wide variety of content areas. Are you saying that these articles
> are not really empirical? Or that they are not really helping us to develop
> better methods to deal with perceived problems of social value? Again, this
> raises the question of "MCA or xmca".
>
> >
>
> > Lastly, perhaps it would be helpful if those of us who believe that
> empirical work guided by CHAT ideas of some value has been produced in,
> say, the past two decades, would post brief summiaries of that work with
> references.
>
> > Maybe its just all verbal sound and fury, signifying the usual!
>
> > mike
>
> >
>
> > On Mon, Sep 15, 2014 at 8:50 AM, David H Kirshner <dkirsh@lsu.edu
> <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu>> wrote:
>
> >
>
> >
>
> >> Does CHAT theory really advance with respect to empirical studies?
>
> >> If so, then why isn't the XMCA discussion a discussion about
>
> >> so-and-so's empirical results and how we should interpret them?
>
> >> Various branches of psychology (e.g., cognitive and developmental) do
>
> >> address concepts, and do conduct empirical research related to concepts.
>
> >> It's true, they rarely enter into full-blooded discussion of what is
>
> >> a concept. But perhaps that's because they're scientists rather than
>
> >> philosophers. They're operating within a framework that is bounded
>
> >> primarily by empirical and methodological expectations and
>
> >> obligations; theory evolves within those boundaries.
>
> >> It's not clear to me that the Vygotskyan research community ever
>
> >> operated in that fashion, and I'm wondering what would happen if it did.
>
> >> David
>
> >>
>
> >>
>
> >> -----Original Message-----
>
> >> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu [mailto:
>
> >> xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu] On Behalf Of Andy Blunden
>
> >> Sent: Monday, September 15, 2014 10:23 AM
>
> >> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
>
> >> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: CHAT Discourse
>
> >>
>
> >> Well, Lisa, I think that is a project which requires a lot of what
>
> >> David would call "philosophical" discussion. :) The Psychology of
>
> >> Concepts, as it is know to American psychology, i.e., the "mainstream"
>
> >> do endless laboratory tests and questionnaires and surveys and so far
>
> >> as I can see have still haven't figured out what a concept is.
>
> >> Andy
>
> >> ---------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> >> -
>
> >> --
>
> >> *Andy Blunden*
>
> >> http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
>
> >>
>
> >>
>
> >> Lisa Yamagata-Lynch wrote:
>
> >>
>
> >>> Well I am guilty for being fixated about thinking and talking about
>
> >>> methods and how to better understand how we can make a trustworthy
>
> >>> leap from understanding the world to understanding concepts. Again
>
> >>> just talking aloud.
>
> >>>
>
> >>> Lisa Yamagata-Lynch, Associate Professor           Educational
>
> >>> Psychology and Counseling
>
> >>> http://www.lisayamagatalynch.net/                         A532 Bailey
>
> >>> Education Complex
>
> >>> IT Online Program Coordinator                              University
>
> >>> of Tennessee
>
> >>> http://itonline.utk.edu/
>
> >>> Knoxville, TN 37996
>
> >>> https://www.facebook.com/utkitonline                    Phone:
>
> >>> 865-974-7712
>
> >>>
>
> >>> On Mon, Sep 15, 2014 at 11:11 AM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net
>
> >>> <mailto:ablunden@mira.net>> wrote:
>
> >>>
>
> >>>     I guess because xmca is a discussion list, Lisa, and we all have
>
> >>>     our specific research interests.
>
> >>>     But when we publish, most of us have something to report.
>
> >>>     I have to plead guilty, I suppose, to spending more of my share of
>
> >>>     time arguing about concepts though. It is my special interest.
>
> >>>     Andy
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>
>
> >> ---------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> >> -
>
> >> --
>
> >>
>
> >>>     *Andy Blunden*
>
> >>>     http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
>
> >>>     <http://home.pacific.net.au/%7Eandy/>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>     Lisa Yamagata-Lynch wrote:
>
> >>>
>
> >>>         Why is it that we came to what David stated as:
>
> >>>
>
> >>>         Generally, we CHATters do not "collaborate and argue over
>
> >>>         facts." We are engaged in making endless theoretical
>
> >>>         elaborations, distinctions, and qualifications almost
>
> >>>         completely detached from empirical specifics.
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>         Lisa Yamagata-Lynch, Associate Professor           Educational
>
> >>>         Psychology and Counseling
>
> >>>         http://www.lisayamagatalynch.net/                         A532
>
> >>>         Bailey Education Complex
>
> >>>         IT Online Program Coordinator
>
> >>>         University of Tennessee
>
> >>>         http://itonline.utk.edu/
>
> >>>                Knoxville, TN 37996
>
> >>>         https://www.facebook.com/utkitonline                    Phone:
>
> >>>         865-974-7712 <tel:865-974-7712>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>         On Mon, Sep 15, 2014 at 10:56 AM, David H Kirshner
>
> >>>         <dkirsh@lsu.edu <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu<mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu%
> 20%3cmailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu>> <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu
>
> >>>         <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu>>> wrote:
>
> >>>
>
> >>>             Andy,
>
> >>>
>
> >>>             I don't think it's at all clear that CHAT is a scientific
>
> >>>         project,
>
> >>>             though it might initially have been conceived as such.
>
> >>>             Generally, we CHATters do not "collaborate and argue over
>
> >>>         facts."
>
> >>>             We are engaged in making endless theoretical elaborations,
>
> >>>             distinctions, and qualifications almost completely
>
> >>>         detached from
>
> >>>             empirical specifics. And as your note has revealed, even
>
> >>>         at the
>
> >>>             level of theory, we're not all playing the same game.
>
> >>>
>
> >>>             I agree with you that simply creating an obligation that
>
> >>>         claims be
>
> >>>             framed empirically does not imply we will "agree on the
>
> >>>             significance of that claim." But perhaps in an empirical
>
> >>>         setting
>
> >>>             theoretical issues surface as methodological issues. In
>
> >>>         this case,
>
> >>>             there is a possibility that disagreements lead to
>
> >>>         separation of
>
> >>>             research enterprises, with (greater) theoretical agreement
>
> >>>         as a
>
> >>>             consequence.
>
> >>>
>
> >>>             David
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>             -----Original Message-----
>
> >>>             From: Andy Blunden [mailto:ablunden@mira.net
>
> >>>         <mailto:ablunden@mira.net>
>
> >>>             <mailto:ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net>>]
>
> >>>             Sent: Monday, September 15, 2014 9:24 AM
>
> >>>             To: David H Kirshner
>
> >>>             Cc: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
>
> >>>             Subject: Re: CHAT Discourse
>
> >>>
>
> >>>             David,
>
> >>>             CHAT is a scientific project. Insofar as it is science
>
> >>> it
>
> >>>
>
> >> must
>
> >>
>
> >>>             strive to produce empirically verifiable claims which are
>
> >>>             meaningful irrespective of the conceptual frame into which
>
> >>>         they
>
> >>>             are accepted. But as a project it is characterised by a
>
> >>>         system of
>
> >>>             concepts. People can agree on this or that hard
> experimental
>
> >>>             finding, but still not agree on the significance of that
>
> >>>         claim. We
>
> >>>             CHATters talk to one another, collaborate and argue over
>
> >>>         facts;
>
> >>>             all of this is possible only to the extent that we share
>
> >>>         concepts.
>
> >>>             "Facts" are the lingua franca of science. As worthy a goal
>
> >>>         as it
>
> >>>             is to lay out some agreed facts, I think it is
>
> >>>         ill-conceived to
>
> >>>             think that this is a means of consolidating a current of
>
> >>>         research
>
> >>>             like CHAT. You can call it philosophical or psychological,
>
> >>>         I don't
>
> >>>             think that makes any difference.
>
> >>>             Andy
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>
>
> >> ---------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> >> -
>
> >> --
>
> >>
>
> >>>             *Andy Blunden*
>
> >>>             http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
>
> >>>         <http://home.pacific.net.au/%7Eandy/>
>
> >>>             <http://home.pacific.net.au/%7Eandy/>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>             David H Kirshner wrote:
>
> >>>             > Following on Andy's discussion of artefact mediation, it
>
> >>>         seems
>
> >>>             inherently a problem of CHAT discourse to distinguishing
>
> >>>         efforts
>
> >>>             to elaborate Vygotsky's psychology more fully, from
>
> >>> efforts
>
> >>>
>
> >> to
>
> >>
>
> >>>             solve the problems Vygotsky was addressing, de novo. In
>
> >>>         tandem, is
>
> >>>             ambiguity as to whether CHAT is a psychological or
>
> >>>         philosophical
>
> >>>             discourse.
>
> >>>             >
>
> >>>             > I wonder, in the spirit of psychology, if advancement of
>
> >>>         CHAT
>
> >>>             would not be better served by embedding theoretical
>
> >>>         discussion in
>
> >>>             analysis of empirical data. The point, here, would not be
>
> >>>         to make
>
> >>>             CHAT more directly relevant to domains of application
>
> >>>         (though that
>
> >>>             would not be a bad thing). Rather, an empirical obligation
>
> >>>         might
>
> >>>             transmute (some) questions of theory into questions of
>
> >>>             methodology. In that way, CHAT could become differentiated
>
> >>>         into
>
> >>>             distinct psychological schools, each constrained by
>
> >>>         methodological
>
> >>>             strictures that also support a more homogeneous theoretical
>
> >>>             environment. At the same time, a wide-open CHAT community
>
> >>>         could
>
> >>>             look across these various schools to pursue broader
>
> >>>         philosophical
>
> >>>             problematics.
>
> >>>             >
>
> >>>             > David
>
> >>>             >
>
> >>>             > -----Original Message-----
>
> >>>             > From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu
>
> >>>         <mailto:xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu>
>
> >>>             <mailto:xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu
>
> >>>         <mailto:xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu>>
>
> >>>             > [mailto:xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu
>
> >>>         <mailto:xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu>
>
> >>>             <mailto:xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu
>
> >>>         <mailto:xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu>>] On Behalf Of Andy
>
> >>>         Blunden
>
> >>>             > Sent: Monday, September 15, 2014 7:02 AM
>
> >>>             > To: Huw Lloyd
>
> >>>             > Cc: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
>
> >>>             > Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: mediate perception and direct
>
> >>>         perception
>
> >>>             >
>
> >>>             > Ah! I see!
>
> >>>             > As Hegel said: "There is nothing, nothing in heaven, or
> in
>
> >>>             nature or in mind or anywhere else which does not equally
>
> >>>         contain
>
> >>>             both immediacy and mediation." I have no great problem
>
> >>>         with anyone
>
> >>>             saying that anything is mediated by anything else, where
>
> >>> it
>
> >>>
>
> >> is
>
> >>
>
> >>>             appropriate. My problem is that the specific insight of
>
> >>>         Vygotsky,
>
> >>>             that artefact-mediation of actions provides an especially
>
> >>>             productive unit of analysis for science is lost if
>
> >>>         mediation in
>
> >>>             the broad sense is mixed up in CHAT literature with
>
> >>>             artefact-mediation to the point that artefact-mediation is
>
> >>>         lost.
>
> >>>             Still, I would prefer that if you were to make the point
>
> >>>         you were
>
> >>>             referring to you used some expression other than
> "mediation."
>
> >>>             >
>
> >>>             > Artefact mediation of actions is a brilliant insight. I
>
> >>>         can do
>
> >>>             what I like, but to do anything (other than have dreams or
>
> >>>             thoughts) I have to use some material object to transmit my
>
> >>>             actions, so to speak - a tool, a word, a gesture, or
>
> >>>         whatever -
>
> >>>             but all these artefacts which I use, without exception, are
>
> >>>             products of the history and culture into which I was born.
>
> >>>         I can
>
> >>>             choose which artefact to use, but culture and history
> produce
>
> >>>             them. So every action I take is essentially
>
> >>>         cultural-historical as
>
> >>>             well as personal. Also, because artefacts are material
>
> >>>         objects,
>
> >>>             their physical form is the same for everyone, it is
>
> >>>         universal. So
>
> >>>             communication as much as miscommunication takes place
> through
>
> >>>             everyone interpreting the same material objects,
>
> >>>         artefacts, that I
>
> >>>             am using in my actions. How can they do that? Because
>
> >>> they
>
> >>>
>
> >> too
>
> >>
>
> >>>             mediate their actions with the same set of universal
>
> >>>         artefacts! So
>
> >>>             all human action is opened to cultural and historical
>
> >>>
>
> >> analysis
>
> >>
>
> >>>             which is as objective as any branch of natural science.
>
> >>>         Wonderful, eh?
>
> >>>             >
>
> >>>             > Andy
>
> >>>             >
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>
>
> >> ---------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> >> -
>
> >>
>
> >>>             > --
>
> >>>             > *Andy Blunden*
>
> >>>             > http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
>
> >>>         <http://home.pacific.net.au/%7Eandy/>
>
> >>>             <http://home.pacific.net.au/%7Eandy/>
>
> >>>             >
>
> >>>             >
>
> >>>             > Huw Lloyd wrote:
>
> >>>             >
>
> >>>             >> If you want to study how action changes then you need
>
> >>>         to study the
>
> >>>             >> history and production of the action.  Under such
>
> >>>         circumstances,
>
> >>>             >> assertions that concepts cannot mediate (the production
>
> >>>         of) actions
>
> >>>             >> become more obviously false.  If one has simplified,
>
> >>>         through
>
> >>>             >> "clarity", the action away from its genetic base then
>
> >>>         it may seem
>
> >>>             >> correct to assert that a concept cannot mediate an
> action.
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >> The conservation tasks (e.g. conservation of volume)
>
> >>>         are an elegant
>
> >>>             >> way to demonstrate this.
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >> Best,
>
> >>>             >> Huw
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >> On 15 September 2014 04:26, Andy Blunden
>
> >>>         <ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net<mailto:
> ablunden@mira.net%20%3cmailto:ablunden@mira.net>>
>
> >>>             <mailto:ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net
> <mailto:ablunden@mira.net%20%3cmailto:ablunden@mira.net>>>
>
> >>>             >> <mailto:ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net
> <mailto:ablunden@mira.net%20%3cmailto:ablunden@mira.net>>
>
> >>>         <mailto:ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net<mailto:
> ablunden@mira.net%20%3cmailto:ablunden@mira.net>>>>> wrote:
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>     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
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>
>
> >> ---------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> >> -
>
> >> --
>
> >>
>
> >>>             >>     *Andy Blunden*
>
> >>>             >>     http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
>
> >>>         <http://home.pacific.net.au/%7Eandy/>
>
> >>>             <http://home.pacific.net.au/%7Eandy/>
>
> >>>             >>     <http://home.pacific.net.au/%7Eandy/>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>     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.
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>         Best,
>
> >>>             >>         Huw
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>         On 14 September 2014 07:02, Andy Blunden
>
> >>>             <ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net<mailto:
> ablunden@mira.net%20%3cmailto:ablunden@mira.net>>
>
> >>>         <mailto:ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net<mailto:
> ablunden@mira.net%20%3cmailto:ablunden@mira.net>>>
>
> >>>             >>         <mailto:ablunden@mira.net
>
> >>>         <mailto:ablunden@mira.net> <mailto:ablunden@mira.net
>
> >>>         <mailto:ablunden@mira.net>>>
>
> >>>             <mailto:ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net
> <mailto:ablunden@mira.net%20%3cmailto:ablunden@mira.net>>
>
> >>>         <mailto:ablunden@mira.net <mailto:ablunden@mira.net<mailto:
> ablunden@mira.net%20%3cmailto:ablunden@mira.net>>>
>
> >>>             >>         <mailto:ablunden@mira.net
>
> >>>         <mailto:ablunden@mira.net> <mailto: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.
>
> >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>             Andy
>
> >>>             >>             PS. And David Ki is completely right in his
>
> >>>             comment, too.
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>
>
> >> ---------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> >> -
>
> >> --
>
> >>
>
> >>>             >>             *Andy Blunden*
>
> >>>             >>             http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
>
> >>>         <http://home.pacific.net.au/%7Eandy/>
>
> >>>             <http://home.pacific.net.au/%7Eandy/>
>
> >>>             >>         <http://home.pacific.net.au/%7Eandy/>
>
> >>>             >>             <http://home.pacific.net.au/%7Eandy/>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>             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
>
> >>>             >>                 reflexes)
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>                 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'.
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>                 -greg
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>                 On Sat, Sep 13, 2014 at 2:48 PM, David
>
> >>>         H Kirshner
>
> >>>             >>                 <dkirsh@lsu.edu <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu
> <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu%20%3cmailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu>>
>
> >>>         <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu<mailto:
> dkirsh@lsu.edu%20%3cmailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu>>>
>
> >>>             <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu<mailto:
> dkirsh@lsu.edu%20%3cmailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu>>
>
> >>>         <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu<mailto:
> dkirsh@lsu.edu%20%3cmailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu>>>>
>
> >>>             >>         <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu
> <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu%20%3cmailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu>>
>
> >>>         <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu<mailto:
> dkirsh@lsu.edu%20%3cmailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu>>>
>
> >>>             <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu<mailto:
> dkirsh@lsu.edu%20%3cmailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu>>
>
> >>>         <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu <mailto:dkirsh@lsu.edu<mailto:
> dkirsh@lsu.edu%20%3cmailto: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
>
> >>>             >>                     entails.
>
> >>>             >>                     David
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >>
>
> >>>             >
>
> >>>             >
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>>
>
> >>
>
> >>
>
> >
>
> >
>
> >
>
>
>


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