[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]

[Xmca-l] Re: dappled



Greg,
You got Bob Lake’s email on Fromm and the collective unconscious. Grokking going on here?
Henry

> On Nov 26, 2014, at 2:52 PM, Greg Thompson <greg.a.thompson@gmail.com> wrote:
> 
> Huw,
> I'm grokking your zawn:
> http://www.thelandreader.com/glossary/zawn
> -greg
> p.s. Someone on this listserve pointed me to "grok". Been grokking ever
> since. "Grok means to understand so thoroughly that the observer becomes a
> part of the observed—to merge, blend, intermarry, lose identity in group
> experience. It means almost everything that we mean by religion,
> philosophy, and science—and it means as little to us (because of our
> Earthling assumptions) as color means to a blind man."
> 
> On Wed, Nov 26, 2014 at 2:17 PM, Huw Lloyd <huw.softdesigns@gmail.com>
> wrote:
> 
>> My poetic sense of dappled is that it is slightly incongruent with 'dappled
>> light', dappled suggests to me a softening, such as to damp down and it
>> seems to me that its not the light which is dappled but the leaf-strewn
>> path etc.  Etymologically it seems to originate from 'to spot' which I
>> understand to be to darken etc.   Conversely spangled refers to the
>> brighten with sparkles.  Possibly there's some affordance in the softening
>> from the "spa" to the "da"...
>> 
>> We've recently adopted a rather classic-looking lurcher with a coat
>> streaked with every shade from coal to an aged snow white.   Maybe theres a
>> term for that admist Hardy, Hopkins and Donne.
>> 
>> That's not much help for question, other than the action-based aspects to
>> the words.  With respect to the singularity of meaning, I usually simply
>> refer to these as technical terms.  It'd be nice to be equipped with a more
>> precise (technical) word though. :)
>> 
>> In respect of fuzzy threads, If you'd like to know what a zawn or a
>> jackstraw is, check out the landreader project:
>> 
>> http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-27780066
>> http://www.thelandreader.com/
>> 
>> Best,
>> Huw
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> 
>> On 26 November 2014 at 20:09, Rod Parker-Rees <
>> R.Parker-Rees@plymouth.ac.uk>
>> wrote:
>> 
>>> Greg to me, not me to Greg but yes.
>>> 
>>> I would agree that sense is multisensory but I am not sure I would say
>>> that words evoke this sense. I would argue that it is speaking (and
>>> sometimes writing) that evokes this 'thick' sense so it is how words and
>>> other signs are 'performed' that is particularly telling.
>>> 
>>> The difficulty with this medium (or one of them) is that most of us don't
>>> really know the person whose words we are reading. I am just beginning to
>>> develop a sense of who frequent contributors are - what you, Andy, Mike,
>>> David, Larry, Vera, Huw, Martin, Haydi, Annalisa and others care about
>> and
>>> like to write about but this is a MUCH slower process than getting to
>> know
>>> someone in face to face conversation and this can make it hard going to
>>> keep up with the asynchronous and semisynchronous twists and turns of an
>>> online 'conversation'.
>>> 
>>> Evoking in writing, to strangers is MUCH more difficult than evoking with
>>> full use of a body (and with the ability to monitor the body responses of
>>> one's conversation partners.
>>> 
>>> Rod
>>> 
>>> Sent from my Windows Phone
>>> ________________________________
>>> From: HENRY SHONERD
>>> Sent: 26/11/2014 18:43
>>> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
>>> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: dappled
>>> 
>>> Rod,
>>> A small point, but important for me, when you say to Greg:
>>>        Evocative, no?
>>> One could argue that the physical forms of language, the signs, in any
>>> genre, EVOKE meaning, whereby we, as language users, profile some facet
>> of
>>> the cognitive, encyclopedic, “ground" which constitutes our semantic
>>> structure. I am guessing any effort to posit an actual structure in the
>>> mind will provoke concerns in the chat, arguing for dynamic processes.
>> But
>>> you have to get nouny sometimes! Call it a useful illusion? What I was
>>> trying to lay out was an alternative to the “packages” of form/meaning to
>>> construe “word”, certainly not what Vygotsky had in mind. I see word
>>> “sense” as collateral activation of the word profiled. And, of course, it
>>> includes all of the sound symbolism inherent in your kids’ names. Written
>>> communication, it seems to me, when done with such care as I see in this
>>> chat, gives me an idea of how deep this language-based semantic
>> activation
>>> goes with experienced readers and published writers.
>>> Henry
>>> 
>>> 
>>> 
>>>> On Nov 26, 2014, at 10:26 AM, Greg Thompson <greg.a.thompson@gmail.com
>>> 
>>> wrote:
>>>> 
>>>> Rod!
>>>> We had the exact same realization - before we added a fourth child
>> (she's
>>>> an outlier), our son pointed out to us that all three kids had the
>> exact
>>>> same three vowels (a, o, i)! This was totally non-intentional on our
>> part
>>>> as well. And no, there aren't a ton of a, o, i names out there -
>>> something
>>>> we discovered with our fourth. (with the fourth, we were running low on
>>> a,
>>>> o, i girl names since we had used up a third a, o, i girl name with our
>>>> third child's middle name; we contemplated "Fiona" but in the end we
>> went
>>>> with an a, e, i name that has other poetic resonances with the others
>>> even
>>>> if it lacks the exact same vowels - that time we did indeed think about
>>> it).
>>>> 
>>>> I think this points to an important quality of meaning - it is highly
>>>> non-intentional in its form and structure.
>>>> 
>>>> A second point follows and speaks to Andy's question - the nature of
>> the
>>>> structure is not always apparent to speakers but we can nonetheless
>>>> reproduce it. We were reproducing a, o, i in names without knowing it.
>>>> 
>>>> It is for this reason that we can understand a passage such as this:
>>>> "“Her antiquity in preceding and surviving succeeding tellurian
>>>> generations: her nocturnal predominance: her satellitic dependence: her
>>>> luminary reflection: her constancy under all her phases, rising and
>>> setting
>>>> by her appointed times, waxing and waning: the forced invariability of
>>> her
>>>> aspect: her indeterminate response to inaffirmative interrogation: her
>>>> potency over effluent and refluent waters: her power to enamour, to
>>>> mortify, to invest with beauty, to render insane, to incite to and aid
>>>> delinquency: the tranquil inscrutability of her visage: the terribility
>>> of
>>>> her isolated dominant resplendent propinquity: her omens of tempest and
>>> of
>>>> calm: the stimulation of her light, her motion and her presence: the
>>>> admonition of her craters, her arid seas, her silence: her splendour,
>>> when
>>>> visible: her attraction, when invisible.” "
>>>> 
>>>> Or a phrase like this:
>>>> “The sea, the snotgreen sea, the scrotumtightening sea.”
>>>> 
>>>> Evocative, no?
>>>> 
>>>> David?
>>>> -greg
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> On Tue, Nov 25, 2014 at 11:44 PM, Rod Parker-Rees <
>>>> R.Parker-Rees@plymouth.ac.uk> wrote:
>>>> 
>>>>> This conversation has been playing on my mind - Henry's comments about
>>>>> language in the other thread (Fate. Luck , Chance) tied in closely
>> with
>>> my
>>>>> own ideas about the ways in which language is dappled with varieties
>> of
>>>>> knowing. There are meanings which we can be pretty confident most
>>> speakers
>>>>> of a language will know and recognise but then there are also
>>> etymological
>>>>> remains which nuance the meaning of some words and word families and
>>> then
>>>>> there are the 'Bouba' and 'Kiki' effects of connections between the
>>>>> physical act of speaking and the felt meaning of sounds/words. What
>>>>> particularly interests me is the middle ground of word families which
>>> have
>>>>> a resemblance which most speakers will recognise but which very few
>> will
>>>>> 'Know'.
>>>>> 
>>>>> Dapple belongs to one such family - words which suggest repetition by
>>> the
>>>>> addition of the '-le' suffix (spark - sparkle, crack-crackle, drip
>>>>> -dribble, dab-dabble) and this family includes words like dapple and
>>>>> freckle, drizzle and giggle which are clearly members of the family
>> but
>>>>> whose lineage has faded (who knows what a dap, freck, driz or gig
>> might
>>>>> be?). I suspect that perished might also belong, at least in part, to
>> a
>>>>> family of 'dying fall' words which share the 'ished' ending (finished,
>>>>> demolished, extinguished, famished). I tried to think of more positive
>>>>> examples but could only come up with 'nourished' (I'm sure I will be
>>> proved
>>>>> wrong on this!).
>>>>> 
>>>>> The point is that words have many shades of meaning and association
>> but
>>>>> ALL of these depend on the fact that these shades are shared. Some may
>>> be
>>>>> shared only within a very small group (and than gives them a special
>>>>> cachet) such as those which a family preserves from the mis-speakings
>> of
>>>>> children. It is the fact that we know that we share our knowledge
>> which
>>>>> converts knowing into understanding and I would argue that the knowing
>>>>> together aspect of con-sciousness is absolutely essential (our
>> thinking
>>> is
>>>>> an internalised form of our social interactions and we learn to think
>>>>> together in our 'own' heads).
>>>>> 
>>>>> I was honestly surprised when I realised that all three of my children
>>>>> have names which include the same two vowels (my daughter is Sophie)
>>> and no
>>>>> others. This was not planned, in fact Sophie's name was chosen by her
>>>>> brothers (which might explain their preference for a name similar to
>>>>> theirs) but this has constructed a family resemblance which doubtless
>>> gives
>>>>> these vowels a different 'feel' for us.
>>>>> 
>>>>> I have to say how much I love the thinkles which dapple this forum!
>>>>> 
>>>>> All the best,
>>>>> 
>>>>> Rod
>>>>> 
>>>>> -----Original Message-----
>>>>> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu [mailto:
>>>>> xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu] On Behalf Of Ed Wall
>>>>> Sent: 26 November 2014 03:41
>>>>> To: ablunden@mira.net; eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
>>>>> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: dappled
>>>>> 
>>>>> Just a note, the term 'perished silk' is reasonably common term (and
>>>>> possibly older than 'perished rubber') although not given space in the
>>> OED.
>>>>> It refers, it seems, to a sort of worn and faded look.
>>>>> 
>>>>> Ed
>>>>> 
>>>>> On Nov 25, 2014, at  8:36 PM, Andy Blunden wrote:
>>>>> 
>>>>>> David, thank you very much for your patient and extended response to
>> my
>>>>> question. At the very great risk of even further humiliating myself, I
>>> want
>>>>> to say that you have nonetheless failed to give a satisfactory
>> response
>>> to
>>>>> my enquiry.
>>>>>> Firstly, all the stuff about my name is misplaced. Although there are
>>>>> several Andy Blundens around, "Andy Blunden" is a proper noun and is
>>>>> therefore not listed in the dictionary any more than David Kellogg or
>>> Seoul
>>>>> are listed. In the sense in which Vygotsky rightly said "All words are
>>> acts
>>>>> of generalisation" "Andy Blunden" is not a word; its referent is an
>>>>> specific entity. But in any case, my enquiry was meant to be about
>>>>> adjectives, not nouns proper or otherwise.
>>>>>> As to "dappled" I was gloriously wrong there, but it was "perished"
>>>>> which set my mind going  in the first place, and I cast around for
>> other
>>>>> examples, and our lovely back garden which has far too many trees for
>>> its
>>>>> tiny size reminded me.
>>>>>> But let me try this single instance, which is after all, all I need.
>>>>>> Meaning 2b in the OED of "perished" is "*b.* Of rubber or a similar
>>>>> material, or an article made from it: having lost its characteristic
>>>>> elasticity and become weak, sticky, etc." dating from 1922.
>> Admittedly,
>>>>> meaning 2a is "*a.* Of a material object or organic substance:
>> decayed,
>>>>> rotted; damaged, in a poor physical state" dating from 1587. So
>>> etymology
>>>>> aside, the writers of the dictionary recognise that in 1922 "perished"
>>> was
>>>>> given a new, specific meaning.which generalises only to the extent
>> that
>>> any
>>>>> rubber or rubber-like object may "perish."
>>>>>> So I fully accept that being a word of the kind I am asking about is
>>>>> never going to be a cut-and-dry matter, but it still seems to me that
>> my
>>>>> enquiry was not entirely nonsensical. :) It was great how Rod
>> responded,
>>>>> because the reflections which led me to ask about it was actually that
>>> such
>>>>> words have great literary, rhetorical and poetic potential. The Gerard
>>>>> Manley Hopkins poem confirmed this in spades, with not only dappled,
>> but
>>>>> pied, brindle, fallow, freckled.
>>>>>> Perhaps I ought to have phrased my question in terms of adjectives
>>>>> which, when used, evoke a specific kind of referent, only implicit in
>>> the
>>>>> adjective? Remember in West Wing, when the candidate calls his
>> opponent
>>>>> "sprightly" - cleverly praising his fitness while reminding us that he
>>> is
>>>>> an old man. That's what I was interested in.
>>>>>> Andy
>>>>>> 
>>> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
>>>>>> *Andy Blunden*
>>>>>> http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> 
>>>>>> David Kellogg wrote:
>>>>>>> So, as Andy must realize by now, his question has to be
>>>>>>> de-metalinguist-icized. The original question is, do we linguists
>> have
>>>>>>> any meta-linguistic term (that is, a term about terms, a
>> terminology)
>>>>>>> to describe the situation where a word has a single, unique
>> referent?
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> Before we can answer this (and I'll do my best) we have to determine
>>>>>>> whether any such situation ever exists. That is, is there a
>> situation
>>>>>>> where a word meaning (which is, Vygotsky tells us, always and
>>>>>>> everywhere an act of generalization) has a unique referent? Here the
>>>>>>> answer appears to be no, since generalization always presupposes
>> that
>>>>>>> you are taking one context of situation and applying it to another.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> You might say that a proper noun like "Andy Blunden" is an exception
>>>>>>> that proves the rule--Andy is always Andy, no matter what situation
>> we
>>>>>>> put him in, and the longer period of time we take the more general
>> the
>>>>>>> generalization "Andy Blunden" becomes. But this is not so, both
>>>>>>> externally and internally: externally, speaking of the name in
>> context
>>>>>>> as a whole, Andy the supposed Referent of the name changes as he and
>>>>>>> we age. Internally, speaking of the structure of the name itself
>>>>>>> alone, we notice that "Andy" specifies which Blunden in the Blunden
>>>>>>> household we mean.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> This suggests that "Blunden" is more general than "Andy"--and on the
>>>>>>> other hand if we google the name we find that in the English
>> language
>>>>>>> as a system, "Andy" is far more general than "Blunden". Needless to
>>>>>>> say, names and nouns are quite a bit more unique in their supposed
>>>>>>> referents than verbs--we have proper nouns which are supposedly
>> closer
>>>>>>> to Andy's ideal of a unique referent than common nouns, but there is
>>>>>>> no such thing as a proper verb describing a unique and unrepeated
>>>>>>> singularity: all verbs are common verbs.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> But we can de-metalinguistic-ize still further. We can ask whether
>>>>>>> there is a situation where a word meaning has a concrete referent.
>> Do
>>>>>>> word meanings always indicate, not some thing in the world (the sort
>>>>>>> of thing that Andy was calling "matter"), but rather some
>>>>>>> generalization we make about it?
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> Here the answer appears to be yes, but once again it's really a
>> matter
>>>>>>> of degree. At one end of language we find grammatical morphemes like
>>>>>>> the "~ed" in "dappled" and "perished" are more grammatical than
>>>>>>> lexical. That is, they have the three grammatical properties
>> Halliday
>>>>>>> calls "closure", "generality" and "proportion". They come from a
>>>>>>> closed set of morphemes--a user of English has a lot of freedom, but
>>>>>>> those freedoms do not include the freedom to invent a new past tense
>>>>>>> morpheme and have it adopted into the language. They are
>> general--you
>>>>>>> can apply them to a wide variety of verbs across the system. And
>> they
>>>>>>> are proportional, because every time you do this you achieve more or
>>>>>>> less the same effect.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> In contrast, you find that the roots of the words "dapple" and
>>>>>>> "perish" are more lexical than grammatical. That is, they are not
>>>>>>> closed class words--you are free to invent new words and to make big
>>>>>>> changes to the pronunciation of old ones, as Gerard Manley Hopkins
>>>>>>> reminds us with his use of "sprung rhythm". They are not general;
>> they
>>>>>>> apply to much narrower and more local, more restricted situations
>>>>>>> (though never unique ones, as Hopkins reminds us insistently with
>> his
>>>>>>> use of the plural). And of course they are not
>> proportional--"dapple"
>>>>>>> means one thing applied to ponies and another applied to mackerels
>>>>>>> (and I find the idea that for Andy the prototypical meaning of
>>>>>>> "perish" has to do with rubber tells us rather more about Andy than
>>>>>>> about rubber).
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> And this is where the thread on "dappled" and "perished" meets the
>>>>>>> thread on "Fate, Luck, and Chance", and begins to form some answer
>> to
>>>>>>> Vera's and Martin's twenty thousand dollar question on how
>>>>>>> consciousness develops. If we go back in time to the moment when
>> Andy
>>>>>>> was an infant, we can imagine that Andy engaged in infant activities
>>>>>>> like ostension and indication. Because the objects the infant Andy
>> is
>>>>>>> picking up and holding are completely new, we can imagine that in
>> his
>>>>>>> undifferentiated consciousness they are in fact singularities. He
>>>>>>> doesn't use words to indicate them (because in order to do this he
>>>>>>> would have to generalize), but his act of picking up and holding do
>>>>>>> have unique referents.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> We can't call this consciousness as we know it (which is why we
>> cannot
>>>>>>> say that "Andy Blunden" refers to any singular context of
>> situation).
>>>>>>> But we can certainly call it consciousness, and we can even see
>>>>>>> fossils of this primitive undifferentiated consciousness in Andy's
>>>>>>> adult language (e.g. his use of "he he", which is what we call in
>>>>>>> Korean "ouiseongeo", that is words that only mean their
>> sounds--Korean
>>>>>>> also has a category of "ouitaeeo" which are words that only describe
>>>>>>> the sound of the way actions look, such as "hurly burly" or "hanky
>>>>>>> panky"). And that, in my humble de-metalinguisticized linguist's
>>>>>>> opinion, is the origin of consciousness.
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> My original question on Fate, Luck, and Chance was--it seems to
>>>>>>> me--related. "Luck" is the way I (as an individual) generalize
>>>>>>> unrelated chance events. But "fate" is the way we (as a speech
>>>>>>> community) generalize the notion of "luck".
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> David Kellogg
>>>>>>> Hankuk University of Foreign Studies
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> On 26 November 2014 at 01:38, HENRY SHONERD <hshonerd@gmail.com>
>>> wrote:
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> I am coming late to this, but I think "collocation" would be of
>>>>> interest. Wikipedia has some good stuff on that.
>>>>>>>> Henry
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> On Nov 25, 2014, at 12:00 AM, Andy Blunden <ablunden@mira.net>
>>> wrote:
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> I have a trivial question for the linguists on this list.
>>>>>>>>> Do you have a word for words like "dappled" and "perished" (or
>>> dapple
>>>>> and perish) which can describe only one thing (shade and rubber
>>>>> respectively)?
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> Andy
>>>>>>>>> --
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>> ------------------------------------------------------------------------
>>>>>>>>> *Andy Blunden*
>>>>>>>>> http://home.pacific.net.au/~andy/
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>>> 
>>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>>> ________________________________
>>>>> [http://www.plymouth.ac.uk/images/email_footer.gif]<
>>>>> http://www.plymouth.ac.uk/worldclass>
>>>>> 
>>>>> This email and any files with it are confidential and intended solely
>>> for
>>>>> the use of the recipient to whom it is addressed. If you are not the
>>>>> intended recipient then copying, distribution or other use of the
>>>>> information contained is strictly prohibited and you should not rely
>> on
>>> it.
>>>>> If you have received this email in error please let the sender know
>>>>> immediately and delete it from your system(s). Internet emails are not
>>>>> necessarily secure. While we take every care, Plymouth University
>>> accepts
>>>>> no responsibility for viruses and it is your responsibility to scan
>>> emails
>>>>> and their attachments. Plymouth University does not accept
>>> responsibility
>>>>> for any changes made after it was sent. Nothing in this email or its
>>>>> attachments constitutes an order for goods or services unless
>>> accompanied
>>>>> by an official order form.
>>>>> 
>>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> 
>>>> --
>>>> Gregory A. Thompson, Ph.D.
>>>> Assistant Professor
>>>> Department of Anthropology
>>>> 880 Spencer W. Kimball Tower
>>>> Brigham Young University
>>>> Provo, UT 84602
>>>> http://byu.academia.edu/GregoryThompson
>>> 
>>> 
>>> ________________________________
>>> [http://www.plymouth.ac.uk/images/email_footer.gif]<
>>> http://www.plymouth.ac.uk/worldclass>
>>> 
>>> This email and any files with it are confidential and intended solely for
>>> the use of the recipient to whom it is addressed. If you are not the
>>> intended recipient then copying, distribution or other use of the
>>> information contained is strictly prohibited and you should not rely on
>> it.
>>> If you have received this email in error please let the sender know
>>> immediately and delete it from your system(s). Internet emails are not
>>> necessarily secure. While we take every care, Plymouth University accepts
>>> no responsibility for viruses and it is your responsibility to scan
>> emails
>>> and their attachments. Plymouth University does not accept responsibility
>>> for any changes made after it was sent. Nothing in this email or its
>>> attachments constitutes an order for goods or services unless accompanied
>>> by an official order form.
>>> 
>>> 
>> 
> 
> 
> 
> -- 
> Gregory A. Thompson, Ph.D.
> Assistant Professor
> Department of Anthropology
> 880 Spencer W. Kimball Tower
> Brigham Young University
> Provo, UT 84602
> http://byu.academia.edu/GregoryThompson