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[Xmca-l] Re: In defense of Vygotsky [[The fallacy of word-meaning]



Carol, mathematics is a natural science like any other.
It is neither the absolute truth nor merely social convention.

Andy
------------------------------------------------------------------------
*Andy Blunden*
http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/


Carol Macdonald wrote:
Julian, Andy

I think arithmetic is something of a test case. Just as word meaning
changes over time in a dynamic way, as recognised by linguists, maths
truths don't. It would be difficult to argue that maths truths of basic
arithmetic have changed over the centuries. I don't know about maths truths
of a higher order.

Sorry if I use the terms arithmetic and maths interchangeably; it's a South
African usage here in basic education.

Carol

On 23 October 2014 08:33, Julian Williams <julian.williams@manchester.ac.uk>
wrote:

Andy

Yes, just so,  this is why I go to social theory eg Marx and Bourdieu to
find political-economic contradictions within and between activities.

But before we go there have we finally dispensed with the notion in
Vygotsky's Perezhivanie paper that the situation or environment is given
and the same for all, and the final form of development is given in a
final, given 'ideal' form right from the beginning ( being then associated
with an already given social plane).

I'm happy enough to accept that this is a false  and undialectical reading
of Vygotsky (after all who knows how the concept of perezhivanie might have
matured in his hands)...

To return to my case - arithmetic. Many will say this exists in ideal form
in the culture and all that needs to be done by development is to bring the
child into the culture... Then the child is 'schooled'... Passive, lacking
in agency, often failed, and at best made obedient to the cultural legacy.
AsBourdieu says, through processes in school the class system is
reproduced, and this is enculturation into the cultural arbitrary.

Julian




On 23 Oct 2014, at 07:08, "Andy Blunden" <ablunden@mira.net> wrote:

No, the point is that for ANL "meaning" refers to the one true meaning
of something. He does not allow that the meaning of something may be
contested, and that a meaning may be contested because of heterogeneity in
society, different social classes, genders, ethnic groups, social movements
and so on. For ANL there is only the one true meaning of something which
"everyone knows" or individual, personal meanings, which are therefore
taken to be subjective.
Andy
------------------------------------------------------------------------
*Andy Blunden*
http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/


Annalisa Aguilar wrote:
This continues and extends from my original post concerning Andy's
breakdown of ANL vs. LSV. There are about 8 points total... [copypasta is a
starch of art] --------------------------------------------------- 6. [The
fallacy of word-meaning] (see original post below)
--------------------------------------------------- You say: "ANL believes
that motivation determines perception. The norm of  perception, the "true"
meaning of an object, is therefore the meaning  it has for the community as
a whole. I am questioning the validity of this concept of "community as a
whole" in this context." So is it the case that word-meaning is denied by
ANL because meaning and symbols "must be" cohesive across the culture and
cannot have personal or spontaneous meaning? I can see the reason
politically to emphasize this, if the State is sanctioned as the sole
arbiter of meaning. --- clip from previous post below Wed, 22 Oct 2014
06:28:48 +0000 Annalisa wrote:
_6th charge_: The fallacy of word-meaning ---------- ANL believes that
the mental representation in a child's awareness must _correspond_ directly
to the object in reality, and not just perceptually, but also how the
object may relate and associate to other objects and their meanings. The
example is a table. Because of this definition of, what I will call here
for convenience (i.e., my laziness) "object-awareness", ANL takes exception
with LSV's rendering of a _single word_ to stand as a generalization to
reference the meaning of the word and as an independent unit
(word-meaning). Furthermore, ANL disagrees with the existence of these
word-meanings, _as units_, but he also disagrees that they are what
construct consciousness as a whole. ANL can say this because he considers
consciousness and intellect to be synonymous. ----------
Andy's reply to #6 above: ANL believes that motivation determines
perception. The norm of perception, the "true" meaning of an object, is
therefore the meaning it has for the community as a whole. I am questioning
the validity of this concept of "community as a whole" in this context.
--end