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[Xmca-l] Re: XMCA-ers: Help needed finding LSV references to *First*and *Second* Signal Systems



You and David make this read like an Azimov novel, Huw. I am happy to keep
reading.

How might Ursula Le Guin and the "lefthand of darkness" fit into
this discussion?

mike

On Sat, Oct 29, 2016 at 3:43 PM, Huw Lloyd <huw.softdesigns@gmail.com>
wrote:

> One approach would be to look to studying the signalling in terms of serial
> and parallel circuits.  If you find serial systems that organise the
> parallel ones then maybe you have two fairly obvious levels in play.
> Assuming the correctness of this description of these species, one can also
> consider the desirability to retain some features of the decision making
> process in analog form, e.g. if vulnerability to predators is a high risk
> then its good to have this in high fidelity, i.e. make it part of the map
> upon which the pieces are moved.  Its also often the case that you can
> trade-off or translate between spatial and temporal representations.  I
> believe your are right to distinguish a moment of digital exchange (the
> bees) within the system, but this is not necessarily indicative of being
> more sophisticated.  Reflexivity may be considered a more enriched decision
> making process that an ideal patterned on a discrete reflection.
>
> Within the mathematical/systems space, there have been interesting
> approaches to studying quorums.  In Stafford Beer's VSM, there is situated
> a large quorum existing between the autonomics of a (recursive) system
> component and its future-oriented intelligence along the lines of an
> action-operation split.
>
> I have clear memories from when I learned to play chess (maybe 5 yrs). I
> had taken up the notion of "surrounding" as checkmate and then proceeded to
> explain this to my older brother in terms of a maze-like structure.  Soon
> after, my father cut out an L-shape from the cover of one of his books, an
> Azimov novel I think.  I don't horde things, but it would have been nice to
> still have that memento.
>
> Best,
> Huw
>
> On 29 October 2016 at 22:28, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com> wrote:
>
> > I'm working with two versions of one of Vygotsky's last lectures (the
> > second version is given exactly five days before he was brought home
> with a
> > throat haemorrhage to die, the first about a year earlier). There are
> > passages that are almost word for word repetitions. There are passages
> that
> > are semantically the same and but quite differently worded (the earlier
> > Vygotsky is quite modest and tentative; the later Vygotsky is much more
> > critical and also more confident). Then there are passages that say
> pretty
> > much the opposite of what was said a year earlier: for example, in the
> > early lecture Vygotsky says that a child faced with a chessboard who
> > doesn't know how to play will see it structurally and sort the pieces by
> > color (black pieces on black squares, white on white) but in the later
> > lecture it is the child who does know how to play who sees it
> structurally,
> > because the child sees a black knight in a "structure" with a white pawn.
> > He's a genius, and geniuses tend to think things over a lot, turning them
> > this way and that, and never looking at anything as final, not even when
> > they are about to die.
> >
> > HDHMF has to be read the same way. Vygotsky cannot quite seem to make up
> > his mind whether there are three stages of higher behavior (instinct,
> > habit, intelligence) or four different stages of higher behavior
> (instinct,
> > habit, intelligence, and freedom). In Chapter Four, he very clearly
> argues
> > for four or more, but in Chapter Five, which may have been written much
> > earlier, he argues for three but then three paragraphs later considers it
> > safer to begin as Thorndike does with two levels (unconditional and
> > conditional responses). So "signal" vs. "signification" could just be
> seen
> > as the difference between unconditional and conditional responses, or it
> > could be seen as the difference between instinct and intelligence, or it
> > could be seen as two poles with an almost infinite number of genetic
> > variations in between. I prefer the latter view, but I recognize that
> > Vygotsky has to package things pretty differently for different
> audiences,
> > and we are not one of the audiences that he has foremost in his mind.
> >
> > Take bacteria. Bacteria are apparently capable of quorum sensing: that
> is,
> > bacteria don't multiply when there are no other bacteria around, they do
> > when there are some but not too many, and they don't when there are too
> > many. Now, take ants. Ants have a system of finding new nests that
> involves
> > scouting for potential sites. If the site is extremely good, they go back
> > and take other ants there quickly, but if it is not so good they tend to
> > dawdle a little, with the result that the best site gets more ants, and
> at
> > a certain point the whole nest "decides" to move there. Now, take
> > bees. Like ants, bees go scouting. The scouts come back and they dance;
> the
> > dances attract more or fewer onlookers, and when a quorum is reached, the
> > hive moves. It seems to me that ALL of these are signalization systems
> (not
> > signifying systems, because they do not have lexicogrammar and cannot
> > convey ideal values) but the difference between the ant system  and the
> bee
> > system is as big as the difference between the bee system and early child
> > language. For ants, the scouting and decision making are not
> > differentiated, but for bees they are distinct moments--so the ant system
> > involves a simple signal system and the bee system involves a second
> signal
> > system.
> >
> > David Kellogg
> > Macquarie University
> >
> > On Sun, Oct 30, 2016 at 3:45 AM, <lpscholar2@gmail.com> wrote:
> >
> > > In this discussion The center of this relational exploration is between
> > > signalization AND signification and my question goes back to the place
> of
> > > the general term *gesturing*.
> > > Is this signalization or is this phenomena signification.
> > > The act creating actual*ity (sens) which always includes tendency or
> > > orientation towards or away from something.
> > > The act is gestural acts and implies *each in the other*.
> > >
> > > The relation of gestural receiving and responding and this phenomena in
> > > relation to signalization and signification.
> > >
> > >
> > > Sent from my Windows 10 phone
> > >
> > > From: Huw Lloyd
> > > Sent: October 29, 2016 9:01 AM
> > > To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> > > Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: XMCA-ers: Help needed finding LSV references to
> > > *First*and *Second* Signal Systems
> > >
> > > Peter,
> > >
> > > If by signalisation you mean use of signs to influence behaviour in
> terms
> > > of operational criteria and speech, then yes this is so.  It has been
> > > studied quite systematically, but is perhaps less well known. I can
> > > elaborate on this if this is your drift.
> > >
> > > Best,
> > > Huw
> > >
> > >
> > > On 28 October 2016 at 22:43, Peter Feigenbaum [Staff] <
> > > pfeigenbaum@fordham.edu> wrote:
> > >
> > > > David,
> > > >
> > > > As usual, your suggestions are both helpful and erudite.  Thanks for
> > the
> > > > poignant references to Vygotsky and to Marx.  Although Soviet
> academic
> > > > politics may have complicated the issue, there does seem to be some
> > > > substance to the argument that the nervous systems of animals and the
> > > > speech communication systems of humans share the common property of
> > > > *signalization*. Personally, I think there's a lot more to this topic
> > > than
> > > > meets the eye--or, better yet, there's a lot of opportunity here for
> > > > developing the problem further.
> > > >
> > > > Once again, I owe an intellectual debt to the participants of this
> > > > listserv!
> > > >
> > > > Cheers,
> > > > Peter
> > > >
> > > > On Fri, Oct 28, 2016 at 5:10 PM, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com
> >
> > > > wrote:
> > > >
> > > > > Peter:
> > > > >
> > > > > I think Mike's right. The "second signal system" was an attempt to
> > > > preserve
> > > > > the idea of higher psychological functions in an atmosphere that
> was
> > > not
> > > > > that different from what was going on in America at the same time
> > (and
> > > > > which Mike experienced first hand in both places). When I read
> > > Belyayev's
> > > > > work on foreign language teaching, he talks a lot about the "second
> > > > signal
> > > > > system". There, are, however, two places in Vygotsky which MIGHT
> > > provide
> > > > > some support, if you wanted to make the case that the "second
> signal
> > > > > system" is not completely incompatible with Vygotsky.
> > > > >
> > > > > One is Chapter Two of the History of the Development of the Higher
> > > Mental
> > > > > functions. See below. Starting around paragraph 142, Vygotsky
> likens
> > > > > Pavlov's model of the brain as a telephone exchange. The problem,
> of
> > > > > course, is that back then telephone exchanges did require human
> > > operators
> > > > > to make the connection!
> > > > >
> > > > > The other is the discussion of "second order symbolism" in the work
> > of
> > > > > Delacroix, which you can find in Chapter Six of Thinking and Speech
> > and
> > > > > also in Chapter 7 of HDHMF (fifth para). This is a very different
> > > > > notion--it's the idea that writing is a set of symbols for
> speaking.
> > > > >
> > > > > David Kellogg
> > > > > Macquarie University
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > > > >From HDHMF, Chapter Two, Research Method
> > > > >
> > > > > We know that, as Pavlov says, “the most general bases of higher
> > nervous
> > > > > activity are ascribed to the large hemispheres, the same in both
> > higher
> > > > > animals and in people, and for this reason even elementary
> phenomena
> > of
> > > > > this activity must be identical in the one and in the other in both
> > > > normal
> > > > > and pathological cases” (1951, p. 15). Actually, this can scarcely
> be
> > > > > disputed. But as soon as we go from the elementary phenomena of
> > higher
> > > > > nervous activity to the complex, to the higher phenomena within
> this
> > > > higher
> > > > > – in the physiological sense – activity, then two different
> > > > methodological
> > > > > paths for studying the specific uniqueness of human higher behavior
> > > open
> > > > > before us.
> > > > >
> > > > > One is the path to further study of complication, enrichment, and
> > > > > differentiation of the same phenomena that experimental study
> > > ascertains
> > > > in
> > > > > animals. Here, on this path, the greatest restraint must be
> observed.
> > > In
> > > > > transferring information on higher nervous activity of animals to
> > > higher
> > > > > activity of man, we must constantly check the factual similarities
> in
> > > the
> > > > > function of organs in man and animals, but in general the principle
> > > > itself
> > > > > of the research remains the same as it was in the study of animals.
> > > This
> > > > is
> > > > > the path of physiological study.
> > > > >
> > > > > True, this circumstance is of major significance and in the area of
> > > > > physiological study of behavior, in a comparative study of man and
> > > > animals,
> > > > > we must not put the function of the heart, stomach, and other
> organs
> > > > which
> > > > > are so similar to that of man on the same plane with higher nervous
> > > > > activity. In the words of I. P. Pavlov, “It is specifically this
> > > activity
> > > > > that so strikingly sets man apart from the rank of animals, that
> > places
> > > > man
> > > > > immeasurably above the whole animal world” (ibid. p. 414). And we
> > might
> > > > > expect that along the path of physiological research we will find a
> > > > > specific qualitative difference in human activity. Let us recall
> the
> > > > words
> > > > > of Pavlov cited above on the quantitative and qualitative
> > > incomparability
> > > > > of the word with conditioned stimuli of animals. Even in the plan
> of
> > > > strict
> > > > > physiological consideration, “the grandiose signalistics of speech”
> > > > stands
> > > > > outside the whole other mass of stimuli, the “multicapaciousness of
> > the
> > > > > word” places it in a unique position.
> > > > >
> > > > > The other path is the path of psychological research. From the very
> > > > > beginning, it proposes to seek the specific uniqueness of human
> > > behavior
> > > > > which does take us beyond the initial point. The specific
> uniqueness
> > is
> > > > > considered not only in its subsequent complexity and development,
> > > > > quantitative and qualitative refinement of the cerebral
> hemispheres,
> > > but
> > > > > primarily in the social nature of man and in a new method of
> > > adaptation,
> > > > as
> > > > > compared with animals, that sets man apart. The main difference
> > between
> > > > the
> > > > > behavior of man and of animals consists not only in that the human
> > > brain
> > > > is
> > > > > immeasurably above the brain of the dog and that the higher nervous
> > > > > activity “so strikingly sets man apart from the rank of animals,”
> but
> > > > most
> > > > > of all, because it is the brain of a social being and because the
> > laws
> > > of
> > > > > higher nervous activity of man are manifested and act in the human
> > > > > personality.
> > > > >
> > > > > But let us return again to the “most general bases of higher
> nervous
> > > > > activity, related to the cerebral hemispheres,” and identical in
> > higher
> > > > > animals and man. We think that it is in this point that we can
> > disclose
> > > > > with definitive clarity the difference of which we speak. The most
> > > > general
> > > > > basis of behavior, identical in man and animals, is
> *signalization.*
> > > > Pavlov
> > > > > said, “So the basic and most general activity of the cerebral
> > > hemispheres
> > > > > is signaling with an infinite number of signals and with changeable
> > > > > signalization” (ibid., p. 30). As is known, this is the most
> general
> > > > > formulation of the whole idea of conditioned reflexes that lies at
> > the
> > > > base
> > > > > of the physiology of higher nervous activity.
> > > > >
> > > > > But human behavior is distinguished exactly in that it creates
> > > artificial
> > > > > signaling stimuli, primarily the grandiose signalization of speech,
> > and
> > > > in
> > > > > this way masters the signaling activity of the cerebral
> hemispheres.
> > If
> > > > the
> > > > > basic and most general activity of the cerebral hemispheres in
> > animals
> > > > and
> > > > > in man is signalization, then the basic and most general activity
> of
> > > man
> > > > > that differentiates man from animals in the first place, from the
> > > aspect
> > > > of
> > > > > psychology, is *signification,* that is, creation and use of signs.
> > We
> > > > are
> > > > > using this word in its most literal sense and precise meaning.
> > > > > Signification is the creation and use of signs, that is, artificial
> > > > > signals.
> > > > >
> > > > > We will consider more closely this new principle of activity. It
> must
> > > not
> > > > > in any sense be contrasted with the principle of signalization.
> > > > Changeable
> > > > > signalization that results in the formation of temporary,
> > conditional,
> > > > > special connections between the organism and the environment is an
> > > > > indispensable, biological prerequisite of the higher activity that
> we
> > > > > arbitrarily call signification and is its base. The system of
> > > connections
> > > > > that is established in the brain of an animal is a copy or
> reflection
> > > of
> > > > > natural connections between “all kinds of agents of nature” that
> > signal
> > > > the
> > > > > arrival of immediately favorable or destructive phenomena.
> > > > >
> > > > > It is very obvious that such signalization – a reflection of the
> > > natural
> > > > > connection of phenomena, wholly created by natural conditions –
> > cannot
> > > be
> > > > > an adequate basis of human behavior. For human adaptation, an
> active
> > > > > *change
> > > > > in the nature of man *is essential. It is the basis of all human
> > > history.
> > > > > It necessarily presupposes an active change in man’s behavior.
> > > “Affecting
> > > > > the environment by this movement and changing it, he changes his
> own
> > > > nature
> > > > > at the same time,” says Marx. “He develops forces asleep in it and
> > > > subjects
> > > > > the play of these forces to his own will” (K. Marx and F. Engels,
> > > > > *Collected
> > > > > Works,* Vol. 23, pp. 188-189
> > > > > <https://urldefense.proofpoint.com/v2/url?u=https-
> > > > > 3A__www.marxists.org_archive_marx_works_1867-2Dc1_ch07.htm-
> > > > > 23forces&d=DQIFaQ&c=aqMfXOEvEJQh2iQMCb7Wy8l0sPnURkcqADc2guUW8IM&r=
> > > > > mXj3yhpYNklTxyN3KioIJ0ECmPHilpf4N2p9PBMATWs&m=
> > > cxiDdHmIrHosSMq59vJlZ4j-S-
> > > > > 4h5DSiLaMzqzi2yNA&s=J3sZBxFP1DTk3B8MLGJTyEw-RZmpA347cJfMSUrwSa4&e=
> > >).
> > > > >
> > > > >
> > > > > On Sat, Oct 29, 2016 at 7:50 AM, Peter Feigenbaum [Staff] <
> > > > > pfeigenbaum@fordham.edu> wrote:
> > > > >
> > > > > > Mike,
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Thanks for the Luria references.  From a cursory reading of the
> > > > relevant
> > > > > > passages in the Luria & Yudovich book, and judging by some of the
> > > other
> > > > > > sources you listed, I get the impression that there hasn't been
> > much
> > > > > > theoretical *fleshing out* of the structures of the second signal
> > > > system.
> > > > > > I hope that the concept of a first and second signal system is
> not
> > > > just a
> > > > > > political argument, but instead has some real substance. I find
> it
> > > hard
> > > > > to
> > > > > > imagine that our *animal* (stimulus-response) system of thinking
> is
> > > > > > developmentally unrelated to our *human* (conversational
> > > > > > initiation-response) system of thinking.
> > > > > >
> > > > > > If anyone else knows of any passages from Vygotsky related to
> this
> > > > topic,
> > > > > > please don't hold back!
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Much obliged.
> > > > > >
> > > > > > In solidarity,
> > > > > > Peter
> > > > > >
> > > > > >
> > > > > > On Fri, Oct 28, 2016 at 1:56 PM, mike cole <mcole@ucsd.edu>
> wrote:
> > > > > >
> > > > > > > Peter-- If you google Luria "second signal system" you will
> come
> > up
> > > > > with
> > > > > > > several references. There is a copy at luria.ucsd.edu of his
> > > little
> > > > > book
> > > > > > > with Yudovich on twins that uses that language.
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > It is not online (so far as i know), but Luria's article on
> > "Speech
> > > > > > > development and the formation of mental processes" in Cole and
> > > > > > > Maltzman, *Handbook
> > > > > > > of Soviet Psychology. *Basic Books, 1969 uses this term a lot.
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > I believe you will find an upsurge of usage associated with the
> > > late
> > > > > > > 1940's-50's when Vygotskians were under severe attack, there
> were
> > > > > special
> > > > > > > "Pavlov sessions" where they had to recant their errors, and
> the
> > > use
> > > > of
> > > > > > > first and second signal system by Pavlov
> > > > > > > allowed them a life line to orthodoxy.
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > mike
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > On Fri, Oct 28, 2016 at 10:43 AM, Peter Feigenbaum [Staff] <
> > > > > > > pfeigenbaum@fordham.edu> wrote:
> > > > > > >
> > > > > > > > Dear colleagues,
> > > > > > > >
> > > > > > > > I don't wish to detract in any way from the very serious and
> > > > > absolutely
> > > > > > > > necessary discussion about male sensitivity (or should I say
> > > > > > > insensitivity)
> > > > > > > > to the voices of the women inhabiting this list, but I sure
> > could
> > > > use
> > > > > > > your
> > > > > > > > collective help with a small matter of scholarship. I am
> trying
> > > to
> > > > > > locate
> > > > > > > > any passages in LSV's Collected Works in English in which he
> > > refers
> > > > > to
> > > > > > > the
> > > > > > > > *first* and *second* signal systems.
> > > > > > > >
> > > > > > > > My understanding is that Vygotsky considers the first signal
> > > system
> > > > > as
> > > > > > > the
> > > > > > > > biologically inherited stimulus-response (S-R) system of
> > reflexes
> > > > as
> > > > > > > > described by Pavlov, whereas the second signal system refers
> to
> > > the
> > > > > > > > culturally inherited system of initiation-response that is
> > > > particular
> > > > > > to
> > > > > > > > human conversational activity. I am working with the
> hypothesis
> > > > that,
> > > > > > in
> > > > > > > > ontogenetic development, the first signal system becomes
> > > > > *domesticated*
> > > > > > > by,
> > > > > > > > and ultimately subordinated to, the second signal system.
> That
> > > is,
> > > > > the
> > > > > > > S-R
> > > > > > > > form of thinking becomes developmentally transformed into the
> > > > > > > > Initiation-Response form of thinking that is characteristic
> of
> > a
> > > > > person
> > > > > > > > performing a listening-speaking turn in conversation.
> > > > > > > >
> > > > > > > > If any of the wonderful scholars on this list could help
> point
> > > this
> > > > > > poor,
> > > > > > > > stumbling colleague
> > > > > > > > in the right direction, I would be most grateful.
> > > > > > > >
> > > > > > > > Warm wishes to all,
> > > > > > > > Peter
> > > > > > > >
> > > > > > > > p.s. -- Let me take this opportunity to express my heartfelt
> > > thanks
> > > > > to
> > > > > > > Mike
> > > > > > > > for creating this list in the first place, and with it the
> > > > > opportunity
> > > > > > > for
> > > > > > > > Vygotskian scholars the world over to share and discuss our
> > ideas
> > > > in
> > > > > an
> > > > > > > > open and honest forum. For my part, I pledge to do my level
> > best
> > > to
> > > > > > raise
> > > > > > > > my own consciousness where it is deficient so that my
> > > participation
> > > > > in
> > > > > > > this
> > > > > > > > forum will be as inclusive and respectful to all of its
> > > > participants
> > > > > as
> > > > > > > is
> > > > > > > > humanly possible.
> > > > > > > >
> > > > > > > > --
> > > > > > > > Peter Feigenbaum, Ph.D.
> > > > > > > > Director,
> > > > > > > > Office of Institutional Research
> > > > > > > > <http://www.fordham.edu/academics/office_of_the_> > >
> > > > > provos/office_of_institutio/index.asp>
> > > > > > > > Fordham University
> > > > > > > > Thebaud Hall-202
> > > > > > > > Bronx, NY 10458
> > > > > > > >
> > > > > > > > Phone: (718) 817-2243
> > > > > > > > Fax: (718) 817-3817
> > > > > > > > email: pfeigenbaum@fordham.edu
> > > > > > > >
> > > > > > >
> > > > > >
> > > > > >
> > > > > >
> > > > > > --
> > > > > > Peter Feigenbaum, Ph.D.
> > > > > > Director,
> > > > > > Office of Institutional Research
> > > > > > <http://www.fordham.edu/academics/office_of_the_>
> > > > > provos/office_of_institutio/index.asp>
> > > > > > Fordham University
> > > > > > Thebaud Hall-202
> > > > > > Bronx, NY 10458
> > > > > >
> > > > > > Phone: (718) 817-2243
> > > > > > Fax: (718) 817-3817
> > > > > > email: pfeigenbaum@fordham.edu
> > > > > >
> > > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > >
> > > > --
> > > > Peter Feigenbaum, Ph.D.
> > > > Director,
> > > > Office of Institutional Research
> > > > <http://www.fordham.edu/academics/office_of_the_provos/
> > > > office_of_institutio/index.asp>
> > > > Fordham University
> > > > Thebaud Hall-202
> > > > Bronx, NY 10458
> > > >
> > > > Phone: (718) 817-2243
> > > > Fax: (718) 817-3817
> > > > email: pfeigenbaum@fordham.edu
> > > >
> > >
> > >
> >
>