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[Xmca-l] Re: FW: Re: Chomsky, Vygotsky, and phenomenology



Hi Aria,

It would help to see the message that Noam is responding to! I don't see, for example, how metaphor crept into this discussion. (Actually, looking back through the thread, I see that this was your proposal.)

I suppose a lot depends on what one means by being "a Cartesian." As I just wrote in another message, Chomsky was, I think, positioning his approach to linguistics in a tradition in which Descartes was prominent: in which one tries to figure out what makes possible a specific characteristic or ability of the mind. Chomsky asked what universal competence would be necessary to make language possible - any language.

I'm not trying to attach a label to the man; but he give the book its title for a reason, and a very respectable one. 

Martin

On Dec 17, 2014, at 4:34 PM, Aria Razfar <arazfar@uic.edu> wrote:

> Here is Chomsky's response to whether or not he is a Cartesian. Not surprisingly, he categorically rejects the idea of "metaphor" as well. At least he's open to change. Now whether our subject is dead or alive that is a different question.  
> 
> Aria 
> 
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Noam Chomsky [mailto:chomsky@mit.edu] 
> Sent: Wednesday, December 17, 2014 3:16 PM
> To: Aria Razfar
> Subject: RE: [Xmca-l] Re: Chomsky, Vygotsky, and phenomenology
> 
> The reason for the phrase "Cartesian linguistics" was explained very clearly in the opening pages of the book.  No one who read at least that far could believe that I am "a Cartesian," let alone anyone who read farther.  I can't account for the illiteracy of "notable folks."
> 
> It's also not a metaphor.  Rather, exactly as I described it, which I would repeat verbatim today.
> 
> There's no need to argue against "mind-body dualism." As I've discussed repeatedly, Newton's discoveries terminated the thesis, at least in its classical form, through Descartes and beyond.
> 
> Of course I've changed my views since the '50s and '60s, in fact in the past few months.  That's normal in subjects that are not dead.
> 
> Noam Chomsky
> 
> 
>