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



The dynamic that I experience [and look for] is what I call *question and
answer*. I find myself listening for how the *author* is responding to the
other. Until the response is performed IN RELATION to the other [as a
question or quest] there is no meaning.  Reading Vygotsky who is responding
to other scholars. or listening to Andy and Martin explore the illusion of
imagination.
I find *meaning* in the *margins*. Think the margins of a book where
comments are written to self [but also written to the author.
THIS may be one particular *type* or *kind* of meaning, but it is what I
see as a hybrid form[ing]
Larry

On Mon, Dec 22, 2014 at 4:41 PM, Annalisa Aguilar <annalisa@unm.edu> wrote:

> [Please explain what 'more than matter' means. No one is claiming 'full
> understanding' of anything. We can only move toward a better understanding
> with science being a tool with its accepted limitations. Are suggesting
> non-matter or metaphysics?]
>
> Sorry, I mean by "matter+" means bodies with minds using tools in society
> within culture in various histories; not metaphysical at all.
>
> [The fact that we cannot "fully" understand how all of this work is
> precisely the nativist position. Biologists and geneticists, and there is
> quite a bit of variation within are attempting to solve problems and make
> sense. They are doing interpretive work.]
>
> Who is doing interpretive work? And can interpretive work connect to how
> processes are formed? Or is everyone interpreting and just defying past
> conventions like fashion?
>
> [Interesting, but how do we know she was 'sad'? How do you make the link
> to consciousness and agency? On a side note there is no way to replicate
> what Patterson has done with regard to Koko's development. Patterson has
> refused to make the protocols public. This is a problem for strict
> empiricists.]
>
> It's true that Koko has its own challenges, and I don't mean to promote
> Koko as a poster child for agency or consciousness, because there are many
> interpretations about agency and consciousness. I was just curious how
> Chomsky would explain this, and from your answers it appears it is all
> behaviorist conditioning.
>
> But I make the connection to consciousness and agency because she is the
> one electing to communicate what she wants to communicate. One really cool
> moment is when she takes Robin William's glasses and puts them on and then
> goes to her room to look out the window. No one told her to do that. That
> was an act of agency as far as I can tell, and that she could conceive to
> look out the window with his glasses is a conscious act. But that is me. I
> found that to be a truly spontaneous act that defies conditioning. It was
> an act of play, of discovery, of childlike curiosity!
>
> [Interesting information, but how does this help us understand the nature
> of language differences?]
>
> Well, it may explain that different environments will generate different
> problems and these problems will generate different activities and these
> will also generate different words and different vocabularies, even
> different languages. And as we can see there is much diversity in what
> humankind does, including the languages we speak. So I see a direct
> connection. Your mileage may vary!
>
> [Silence would not constitute incompatibility. It could be 'incomplete' as
> Elinor Ochs argued years ago. To be fair, I have not seen this in any of
> Chomsky's writings nor am I aware of any nativist suggesting the
> non-importance of society, culture, and environment.  If so, can you point
> me to some sources where the importance of society, culture, and
> environment is dismissed. In fact, Chomsky cites the existence of many
> languages as proof of the importance of the environment, society, and
> culture.]
>
> I did not mean to imply that silence was dismissal. But it is difficult to
> have a conversation with silence on one end of the conversation, you must
> admit. I didn't mean to imply any negativity, I only mean to reference the
> absence.
>
> [There is no evidence of this anywhere in the writings. If so, please
> provide a citation for further discussion.]
>
> Sorry, this is not going to be cited anywhere, it is anecdotal. I was told
> he said this in a lecture. I can't substantiate this claim at all. But if
> it is the case, it certainly isn't going to be received well, you must
> agree.
>
> [The nativists would agree that science is interpretive grounded in
> principles with many unanswerable mysteries, including the nature,
> function, and purpose of language. They restrict their claims to that which
> can be publicly scrutinized and evaluated.]
>
> So I'm curious, can the activity and environment and tools and culture and
> history in which language is spoken be publicly scrutinized or not? Or do
> these remain metaphysical mysteries? Can or does language link to other
> aspects of human experience beyond speech? Or is everything interpretive
> with no basis? No rules? no patterns of emergence? Sorry, I really don't
> mean to be obtuse or rude. Just trying to understand.
>
> Saying everything it interpretive is like saying everything is material.
> I'm not sure how far one can get with that.
>
> [Interesting take on Descartes and non-conformists. Any sources on this?]
>
> Nope no sources. Well actually… I can say, I am the source, which may not
> qualify, but I suppose if this list is a publication, you may cite me! :)
> Has anyone said this elsewhere? I'm not sure. I'd be curious if it has been
> said before and would enjoy to speak to anyone who said it! :)
>
> I don't think it's an unreasonable claim, when considering the social
> effects of surveillance, torture, and capital punishment and its effects
> upon intellectual freedom. I certainly don't feel I have damaged the legacy
> of Descartes at all. My assertion really is not to claim I can read
> Descartes's mind 450 years later, but only that history is a river of
> change and different measures are required to meet different challenges. I
> think he did a great thing to extricate the practice of science from the
> grip of the church.
>
> Now how much he was aware of what he was doing, is a matter for the
> philosophers and the historians, I suppose. I'm only remarking on the
> effects of his assertions, which enabled the Scientific Revolution.
>
> [Not sure how this is known.]
>
> Read the quote and then decide for yourself the context of that quote, who
> Descartes was, etc. You can certainly say I have interpreted the quote that
> way, and that would be true! We do know Descartes was terribly ironic.
>
> By the way, what do Chomskians say about irony anyway???
>
> [If you reject Cartesian duality (at least in the literal form) then this
> isn't a problem, because it is all an integrated whole. Hence, the search
> for universals and 'whole language.' The mind is already united within the
> body (brain) and integrated with the environment. The separation is only
> imagined.]
>
> Well, whether you and I understand the separation to be imagined, that
> separation still exists in the minds of many people and practices today. It
> is an institutionalized imagination, which makes it a real problem based
> upon imaginings. My stance is (at this point) it's not about finding
> universals, because this is (to me) an ideal that can't be determined by
> language alone existing in a vacuum. I'm interested in what can be grounded
> in practice and in community. It's about understanding how language is used
> in contexts, relationships, and processes, and then determining what works
> in particular circumstances.
>
> [Maybe Camp Vygotsky and Camp Chomsky should go camping together.]
>
> Possibly. We can talk s'mores!  :)
>
> What I sense, however, is that the interpretive stance (if I am being fair
> in referencing that as the Chomskian stance) is not so attractive to Camp
> Vygotsky, and I suspect language within plural sociocultural contexts is
> not attractive to Camp Chomsky.
>
> Maybe other Camper V's will pipe up and speak their minds on the matter+?
>
> Kind regards,
>
> Annalisa
>
>
>