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[Xmca-l] Re: in the eye of the beholder



Andy,

Taking project as the KEY concept and stating that projects are shared
collective desires to change *concepts* is highlighted in your example.
The *intended* project is to change people's understanding of asbestos as a
miracle substance to a deadly substance.

Returning to the article Peter posted on *perspectival* assumptions as
being collective and developing the concept of *perspective* away from its
subjective bias to taking *perspectival* as collective could be understood
as a *project* [writing articles to change others concepts of *perspectival*

I sense an *overlap* and possible synergy between notions of *changing
concepts* intentionally AND realizing changing perspectives by *looking*
with an intentional focus.
Are we referring to similar phenomena??
The inherent stability of concepts/perspectives and the intentional
projects to change the *shape* of harmful perspectives/concepts.
Is there a bias to see perspectives AS images and concepts AS linguistic?
Is this the question of multi-modality [recently shared on line]??

I appreciated the clarity of the example of asbestos workers who shared an
understanding of asbestos [as a miracle substance that was actually
deadly]

The relations between perspective taking, interpretive understanding,  and
concept development is the question I'm left with.
Larry

Larry



On Sun, Sep 21, 2014 at 10:57 PM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:

> Michael, Charles.
> This is an issue which I think can be tackled by Activity Theory, not just
> climate denial, but a whole range of belief/disbelief problems like this.
> Social justice issues and social change in general depend on understanding
> and solving these kind of prejudice and scepticism. Postmodern relativism
> has given us a poisoned chalice indeed.
>
> I believe that Activity Theory is well placed to solve this category of
> problem and give some guidance as to how to tackle deeply held but
> irrational prejudice. Developed using 'project' as the unit of analysis I
> think Activity Theory gives us a really useful theory of ideology which has
> the advantage of being firmly connected to a living tradition in
> psychological science and meaningfully connected to how people live their
> lives.
> Taking Creationism as an example, among European and American societies,
> the USA boasts the largest percentage of people in the world who believe
> that God created the world just as it is today about 10,000 years ago. They
> are rivalled only by Turkey. And it does not correlate with lack of
> education. In fact, among Republican voters, the more educated you are the
> more likely you are to believe in the Old Testament story of Genesis and
> not Darwin. A significant percentage of Democrat voters also believe in
> Creationism, but this declines with education.
>
> The point is that when people evaluate evidence, as Charles was
> suggesting, we do so by integrating the new data into our existing
> conceptual frame. I regularly dismiss all sorts of news and theories
> because it doesn't fit into my conceptual frame! We all do. The reason why
> there is so much Creationism in the US is that Darwin versus the Old
> Testament has been *politicised*. You prefer the Old Testament for guidance
> as to the origin of species rather than science (personal experience can
> shed no light on the question) because it is a litmus test for adherence to
> the Good Life, just as some people hate bicycle-riders because it is a
> signal of support for Greeny ideas which are deemed hostile to the ordinary
> person. I believe that Climate Denial is part of the same issue. In
> Australia there are rather too many Climate Deniers because the issue has
> become politicised. Officially the conservative government accepts the
> science, but every knows they don't and this is reflected in policies like
> appointing climate deniers to head committees to review energy policy,
> repealing the carbon price, etc., etc. There are a higher percentage of
> climate deniers in Australia, as a result, than in Europe where the climate
> is not politicised in that way.
>
> One's conceptual frame is unified through commitment to a life-project.
> Opinions and evidence which don't fit the conceptual frame generated by the
> central concept of a life-project, its vision of the Good Life. There is a
> 10 minute talk on this in relation to denial of the dangers posed to health
> by asbestos here: https://www.academia.edu/8179060/Activity_as_Project_
> The_Case_of_Asbestos
>
> Apologies for going on too long.
> Andy
> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> *Andy Blunden*
> http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
>
>
>
> Charles Bazerman wrote:
>
>> Michael,
>> I am with you, and not only because of climate change deniers.  The
>> sociocultural critique has been important to show that humans make
>> knowledge, and they do it from their own interests and perspectives.  Yet,
>> various disciplines and sciences, have come to know more about the world in
>> ways that are less entangled with the limits of individual or small group
>> perceptions and interests.
>> Disciplines do represent the world outside of themselves, gathering
>> data--of course selectively through their own devices, their means of
>> collection, forms of inscription and display, etc...  Historically, the
>> methodological standards in different fields have evolved to include more
>> awareness of the contingency, fragility, and specificity of samples, data
>> and analysis--along with increasing cleverness of our tools.   This is what
>> methodology is all about.  I tend to view objectivity not as an absolute,
>> but an awareness of ways in which we are entangled with the phenomena we
>> are trying to study, and to find ways to disentangle ourselves less.
>> So from this perspective, incorporating the sociocultural critique
>> creates challenges to maintain the persuasiveness of our data,
>> representation, and analysis. Over the last few decades, we have been
>> struggling in different disciplines to incorporate this critique but yet
>> maintain the disciplinary projects of advancing contingent, but useful and
>> reliable knowledge.  I like your term warranted assertability. I myself
>> have relied on the idea of accountability--in terms of being able to give a
>> good account of your research actions when queried from various directions.
>> But it is important to the advance of knowledge that we find ways to gather
>> and understand information about the world (in which we are both living
>> parts and the constructors of knowledge about that world including
>> ourselves) that recognizes the contingency of our knowledge but does not
>> evaporate our confidence in that knowledge into a vapor of contingency only.
>>
>> I have struggled with this issue for many years in my work on the
>> rhetoric of science and have discussed it in various ways, drawing on the
>> work of many others (Ludwik Fleck still seems important to me over many
>> years), but more work needs to be done to crystallize an understanding that
>> leaves science and social science standing despite it being created by
>> poor, frail, interested, humans of limited and skewed vision.
>> best,
>> Chuck
>>
>> ----- Original Message -----
>> From: "Glassman, Michael" <glassman.13@osu.edu>
>> Date: Monday, September 22, 2014 11:21 am
>> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: in the eye of the beholder
>> To: "eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity" <xmca-l@mailman.ucsd.edu>
>>
>>
>>
>>> It seems to me that articles like this can be a double edged sword.
>>> They use examples where culture has an influence on how we see things but
>>> then offer the generalization that science is perspective.  This is the
>>> same line you hear by climate deniers who claim that the climatologists
>>> have a liberal bias.   Science is based on individual perspective until it
>>> doesn't.   I'm their book is a much more nuanced discussion.   This is a
>>> really complex issue which at this particular moment has extraordinary
>>> import.  Maybe we need to find other ways to discuss this - like warranted
>>> assertability.  Perhaps I have been spending too much time reading about
>>> the politics of climate change lately and it has spooked me.
>>>
>>> Michael
>>> ________________________________________
>>> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu [xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu]
>>> on behalf of David Preiss [daviddpreiss@gmail.com]
>>> Sent: Sunday, September 21, 2014 9:41 PM
>>> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
>>> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: in the eye of the beholder
>>>
>>> And they make claims for all humankind.
>>>
>>> Enviado desde mi iPhone
>>>
>>>
>>>
>>>> El 21-09-2014, a las 22:16, Martin John Packer
>>>>
>>> <mpacker@uniandes.edu.co> escribió:
>>>
>>>
>>>> So there are two distinct problems here: First, the researchers are
>>>>
>>>>
>>> not diverse. Second, the people they (we?) study are not diverse.
>>>
>>>
>>>> Martin
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>
>>>>> On Sep 21, 2014, at 8:11 PM, David Preiss <daviddpreiss@gmail.com>
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>> wrote:
>>>
>>>
>>>> Loved the WEIRD acronym. One of the best ironies I've seen in
>>>>>
>>>> recent scientific writing.
>>>
>>>
>>>> Enviado desde mi iPhone
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>
>>>>>> El 21-09-2014, a las 18:57, Rod Parker-Rees
>>>>>>
>>>>> <R.Parker-Rees@plymouth.ac.uk> escribió:
>>>
>>>
>>>> Great article, David - highlights the importance (at every level)
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>> of being aware of what others might find odd about us (secondary
>>> socialisation?).
>>>
>>>
>>>> Rod
>>>>>>
>>>>>> -----Original Message-----
>>>>>> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu
>>>>>>
>>>>> [mailto:xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu] On Behalf Of David Preiss
>>>
>>>
>>>> Sent: 21 September 2014 18:31
>>>>>> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
>>>>>> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: in the eye of the beholder
>>>>>>
>>>>>> This article is revelant for this topic: http://www2.psych.ubc.ca/~
>>>>>> henrich/pdfs/WeirdPeople.pdf
>>>>>>
>>>>>> Enviado desde mi iPhone
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>>
>>>>>>> El 21-09-2014, a las 13:42, mike cole <mcole@ucsd.edu> escribió:
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> The book by Medin and Bang, "Who's asking" published by MIT is GREAT
>>>>>>> reading. Seeing this in Scientific American is super.
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> mike
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> On Sun, Sep 21, 2014 at 8:18 AM, David Preiss <
>>>>>>> daviddpreiss@gmail.com>
>>>>>>> wrote:
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> What a fantastic piece Peter! Loved the references to primatology.
>>>>>>>> David
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> Enviado desde mi iPhone
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>> El 21-09-2014, a las 7:31, Peter Smagorinsky <smago@uga.edu>
>>>>>>>>> escribió:
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>> http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/point-of-view-
>>>>>>>> affects-how-s
>>>>>>>> cience-is-done/
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> --
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>> Development and Evolution are both ... "processes of construction
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> and
>>>
>>>
>>>> re- construction in which heterogeneous resources are
>>>>>>>
>>>>>> contingently but
>>>
>>>
>>>> more or less reliably reassembled for each life cycle." [Oyama,
>>>>>>> Griffiths, and Gray, 2001]
>>>>>>>
>>>>>>>
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