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[Xmca-l] Re: Fate, Luck and Chance [Language as a form]

"Fate, Luck, Chance" and the "rather blokish struggle for power over
particular words"

Is this "struggle" more than personal?  Are traditions involved? As I read
the struggle unfolding I hear voices that are expressing positions which
trace long ancestral lineages. This struggle is passionate but seems much
bigger than individual struggles.

Are the particular words used [word/play] ways of indicating deeper
*truths* that are contested as positions and stances are thoughtfully

I go back to the notion of *dispositions* [acquired through passionate
inquiry]. When we bring these words to *arenas* and *perform* these words
it seems to be not *merely* words but the passions of a lifetime [and the
ancestral traditions also involved] that are being brought to the arena and
played out.

To guide my personal experience of what is occuring in these heated
debates, I have developed a particular *disposition* through trying to
aquire Gadamer's hermeneutic perspective on life.  He saw [generative]
conversation as vital to our human condition.

 If passionate conversation is sometimes discordant, do we stop the
Fate, luck, chance [Peirce's tychism] and also *faith* in *interpretive
In other words,   rhetorical and persuasive performances. Performances not
as *merely* rhetorical but as foundationally rhetorical expressions as acts
of *faith*.  Intersubjective interpretive communities *all the way down*

On Wed, Nov 26, 2014 at 2:45 PM, Bruce Robinson <brucerob1953@googlemail.com
> wrote:

> Henry,
> Your wife's question leads to another: who speaks for the silent majority,
> many of whom, like me, must be getting fed up with what David K calls a
> "rather blokish struggle for power over particular words'? [Not Richard
> Nixon :)]
> Bruce R
> PS: You may also note that I have not changed the subject heading of this
> message so that it bears no relation to the content. Something else I find
> irritating...
> On 26/11/2014 17:16, HENRY SHONERD wrote:
>> Sister Analisa,
>> Thank you for responding! I was just talking to my wife (getting
>> personal!) about the chat. She asked me, “How does anyone get to
>> participate in the (XMCA) chat if only a few people take part?” I wondered
>> in my email below if too much was expected of written communication in the
>> XMCA chat. With 800 people potentially taking turns, well…what is even
>> possible logistically? Mike Cole has talked about this, and, I think, has
>> some suggestions on how to deal with the bottlenecking. But even small
>> scale communication can be daunting. I watched, with my wife, a Richard
>> Linklater movie last night, “Before Midnight”. Two people, face to face, in
>> a totally committed relationship, smart people, good people, trying so hard
>> to get it right. Always a work in progress. But it’s worth it. The
>> alternative is despair. I am sure of this: This chat, which seems to get
>> bogged down in abstractions, pure thinking in the mud, is really
>> consequential beyond the sensitivities of academics. I said we va
>>   lue Vygotsky’s “heroism”, but that’s too macho. I should have said
>> courage.
>> The Linguistic Relativity Hypothesis is a powerful idea, often called the
>> Whorf/Sapir hypothesis. Google it. Really. See what you think. One gauge of
>> the power of an idea is if it has found its way into popular discourse. I
>> just this morning heard an NPR radio program (thanks again to my wife, who
>> was listening when she heard something she thought I would be interested
>> in) that dealt with the Whorf/Sapir hypothesis in its strong and weak form.
>> Henry
>>  On Nov 25, 2014, at 10:11 PM, Annalisa Aguilar <annalisa@unm.edu> wrote:
>>> Dear Henry,
>>> Thank you for your reply.
>>> I don't think being personal (or even personable) requires being heated.
>>> Does this have to do with my comment of warmth as a sign of welcome?
>>> To speak about culture non-personally is not something I am adept at
>>> doing. We are always speaking from where we stand, the culture that we are
>>> in or from, what-have-you.
>>> Respectfully, I do not know what "linguistic relativity hypothesis" is.
>>> So please be patient with me while I connect this academic idea you have
>>> offered to this conversation so that I can relate that to my personal
>>> experience speaking on this thread, though clearly I'm not speaking
>>> literally right now, but it is speech from me, not a sock puppet with my
>>> voice thrown from the position of objective reality.
>>> You are talking about speaking two languages. But it seems we are all
>>> speaking English on this list. So I'm a bit lost right there what you are
>>> trying to say to me.
>>> Then, you speak of metalinguistics and how it represents different
>>> worldviews, if you don't mind me swapping your use of "perspective" for
>>> worldview. There is a lot of time clearing muckups to get it right. I'm not
>>> sure that it ever gets right though, which troubles me. I have found that
>>> many people who have different worldviews communicate by "talking to,"
>>> rather than "talking at." I feel, for example, you and I are talking to one
>>> another, despite our likely different POVs.
>>> I don't know what the "perish and dapple of Andy" means when you say
>>> that. From what I can tell he's trying to define something for himself
>>> asking for the help of others. That's fine and I'm learning that
>>> definitions are very bas-relief for him. I think my interests are a little
>>> different. So I'd prefer to orient to my interests, if that is OK.
>>> Speaking of metalinguistics, rather than debate over definitions, I'm
>>> more interested in speaking to the very different people who are on this
>>> list. The rumor is there are 800 folks out there. Where are you? :) To
>>> reference a highly academic quote from the Wizard of Oz:
>>> "Come out, come out wherever you are, and meet the young lady who fell
>>> from the star!"
>>> --Glinda, the Good Witch from the North (waves magic wand)
>>> I'm curious how others have been inspired by Vygotsky and sociocultural
>>> theory, and even other manifestations of his ideas, such as CHAT, etc and
>>> how people are using these approaches in their work. What is that like for
>>> you? And to be more specific, what is that like for women and people of
>>> color? I'm also interested in thinking-out-loud with others about
>>> Vygotskian concepts that are not easy to understand; to employ in real time
>>> dialogue and social interaction to leap over zopeds together. Isn't that
>>> what a listserv is for? Or am I being too idealistic?
>>> I have tried to speak in an open, easy, and immediate manner, to allow
>>> others to engage. But I fear that engagement is never going to happen
>>> because all that persists are conversations about definitions, or whether
>>> nothing can come from nothing, and voila! subsequent debates ensue. Or
>>> someone will say, "We already discussed this 20 years ago!" Which means I
>>> missed the party, I suppose. Unfortunately, if I disagree with a position
>>> because I interpret differently, then I'm told to go read something without
>>> really a clear explanation why I'm supposed to go read something.
>>> I don't really agree with the approach of "read this," as an academic
>>> argument. Anyone is free to use it, and I have myself, but because I know
>>> how obtuse that can be, I couch it with my reasons why I think it would be
>>> a good read for that person, and what I think there is learn from reading.
>>> I think the "read this" approach, when it is offered with the tone of "now
>>> go eat your vegetables!" fails in the making of speech between people. All
>>> it does is shut things down.
>>> If the reading truly is relevant, it seems far more productive in the
>>> moment of speech to cue a person what to look for, to supply a context,
>>> especially when referencing an entire book, for example, or the link to an
>>> entire website full of texts.
>>> Your assessment in the physicality of language is something with which I
>>> am completely in agreement. Especially since we all seem to agree with the
>>> material aspects of language. So the question at hand is a matter of form.
>>> Form has an aesthetic but also has a purpose. Are we throwing ropes or
>>> throwing boulders? If throwing boulders, where does that need to throw
>>> boulders come from? If throwing ropes, then at least connections are being
>>> made for those who might not be very clear about ideas and who may require
>>> a helping hand.
>>> Then there's the old, but handy, elliptical comment, something like a
>>> boomerang... meant to be subtle or ironic at the expense of someone who may
>>> not understand.
>>> At this point, I'd to emphasize that being ignorant is not being stupid,
>>> but it seems someone who is ignorant is frequently treated as stupid (um,
>>> on this list). This "phenomenon" has made me reflect upon how little time
>>> is spent upon the nature of ignorance in education and the dynamics of
>>> ignorance in speaking. Every one of us is ignorant about most things in the
>>> world. And yet being ignorant is seen as an embarrassment, a deficiency, a
>>> lapse in character. I vehemently disagree with this reception to ignorance.
>>> Even Einstein said something like, "The more I know, the more I see how
>>> much I don't know." Such an aggressive position toward ignorance is nothing
>>> but hurtful, even arrogant. Arrogance is a blister, a defense mechanism
>>> from previous hurt. A person who is honest about one's own ignorance is a
>>> very strong person and is showing a willingness to learn something. I think
>>> all teachers will agree that a person who knows one doesn't know is an
>>> easier student to teach than
>>    one who doesn't know one doesn't know.
>>> Iconicity is something I can hang my hat on. I see it is related to
>>> pointing. What I like about pointing is that it is a gesture, which implies
>>> movement, in the way the word is also movement. I hope I have made
>>> sufficient personal connections to your concepts without the heat. Thank
>>> you for offering them to me.
>>> Kind regards,
>>> Annalisa