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[Xmca-l] Re: Fate, Luck and Chance



On Nov 19, 2014, at 4:56 PM, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com> wrote:

> "objective"
> just means that something is seen as not subject to change by a
> discourse community, even where that discourse community consists of
> just me and my lonely self. 

Perhaps, David. But with time and effort and study we can come to view that something differently, no?

There's a small but growing literature on "constitution" - the way that a water molecule is constituted of, not caused by, hydrogen and oxygen. And the article I was reading today was making an interesting distinction between 'internal constitution,' as in the case of water, and 'external constitution,' as in the case of money. What makes a coin a token of monetary value is *external* to it: the social institutions of banking and the practices of buying and selling. These don't cause it, they constitute it. The coin, taken at face value, is objective. But once we study it as it circulates through these practice and institutions, we come to see that its objectivity does not mean it cannot change. On the contrary.

Although LSV like to talk about the constituents of a meaningful word as 'internal' to that word, it seems more accurate to see them as external in the same sense as the constituents of a coin or a bill are necessarily external to it.

Martin