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[Xmca-l] Re: units of analysis? LSV versus ANL


   "The basic 'components' of separate human activities are the actions
   that realize them. We regard action as the process that corresponds
   to the notion of the result which must be achieved, that is, the
   process which obeys a conscious goal. Just as the concept of motive
   is correlative with the concept of activity, so the concept of goal
   is correlative with that of action." (Leontyev, 1978)

An *Action* differs from "an activity" because is order to satisfy its motive, people act according to "partial" goals, which taken together realise the motive of the whole activity. But in general the motive of the activity is not guiding everything a person does along the way. It is in the background so to speak.

An action differs from an *operation* because even though an action is completed only thanks to a series of operations (lift left foot, move weight to right, move weight forward, straighten leg, ...), these operations are not done with conscious control but are determined by the conditions. An operation changes into an action and comes under conscious control if we trip for example, and an action changes into an operation when for example we learn to tie out shoelaces without thinking about every twist and turn of tying the knot.

Actions are inclusive of all the psychological processes entailed in their execution (like Mike rehearsing what he going to say on xmca while driving).

A *Defect-compensation* is the psychological development a person makes to compensate for the social deficit entailed in norms of interaction which are not adapted to the person's "disability." "Defect" does not refer to a person "having a defect"; the defect is in the relation between the person and their social environment.


*Andy Blunden*

Tonyan, Holli A wrote:
Can you explain more about "action" versus "activity"?  These two terms get used a lot in nuanced ways and I get confused.  If there is a place where this is already delineated, could you please point me in that direction?

Also, I am not familiar with defect-compensation.

Sent from my iPad

On Oct 17, 2014, at 9:35 PM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:

Martin, I think the issue is that we have certain concepts which are intrinsically both subjective and objective (action, activity, meaning, experience for example) but we also have other concepts which are intrinsically either objective or subjective (behaviour, weight, thinking, consciousness, mood for example). Of course, because subject and object are mutually constituted, any of these domain-specific concepts also entails relations to the other domain. Otherwise we have nonsense. If I say "The Stock Market crashed in 1929" I am not talking about a state of mind, though obviously states of mind were entailed in this event. Likewise "I'm in a bad mood today" is not a statement about events in my life, even though these may be the cause.

What Vygotsky has done which allows him to develop a nondualistic psychology is that he took as his *most fundamental* concept "action". His other key concepts, his units of analysis for the various investigations, are also concepts which are intrinsically subjective/objective. E.g., word meaning, defect-compensation, perezhivanie. This is it: choose as your unit of analysis a concept which is a unity of objective and subjective.

ANL would agree with his, but in his critique he is trying to muddy the water by claiming that Vygosky takes as his fundamental concept, "consciousness".

*Andy Blunden*
Martin John Packer wrote:
Who says that emotional experience is "subjective," Huw? LSV writes throughout The Problem of the Environment that perezhivanie is the child's relationship to social reality. In my book that makes it personal, not subjective. The word "subjective" doesn't occur once in the text. It is certainly a common assumption in today's dualistic psychology that experience is subjective, a mental state.That would indeed be idealist.  But since LSV is avoiding dualism...