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[Xmca-l] Re: Communication, Co-generalization, and Crises



You might link that up with my remarks about Wertsch's "implicit
mediation", Larry, in the comparisons paper.

Best,
Huw

On 9 November 2016 at 17:56, <lpscholar2@gmail.com> wrote:

> One further trace from Ruqaiya. What I posted previously is on page 9 of
> her article. Further down this page Ruquaia is  focusing on (mental
> dispositions).
>
> In her words:  The Vygotsky literature ignores what I (Ruqaiya) have
> called *invisible semiotic mediation*: Mediation that occurs in discourse
> embedded in everyday ordinary activities of a subject’s life.  In this way,
> the literature on semiotic mediation ignores the genesis of mental
> (dispositions), the social subjects’ culturally learned *sense* of *what
> matters in life*. And yet there is every reason to suppose that these
> mental (attitudes) are critical in the success of otherwise *visible*
> semiotic mediation, which is active in the genesis of *so called* higher
> mental functions.
>
> This draws our attention to two dimensions of semiotic mediation
> (invisible and visible) and a third aspect which is the relation occuring
> within the intertwining of the (invisible and visible)
>
>
>
>
>
>
> Sent from my Windows 10 phone
>
> From: lpscholar2@gmail.com
> Sent: November 9, 2016 7:59 AM
> To: Rod Parker-Rees; eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> Subject: RE: [Xmca-l] Re: Communication, Co-generalization, and Crises
>
> Rod, Mike, David,
> I know i am now in over my head, trying to follow this nuanced and complex
> conversation through communication, co-generalization and crises.
> I have been reading Vygotsky’s last lecture on school age in
> conconjunction with Ruquiya’s paper (semiotic mediation language and
> society: Three exotripic theories – Vygotsky, halliday, Bernstein).
>
> To read both papers in a zig-gap-zag back and forth immersion in this
> topic or theme (textual theme)
>
> Here is Ruqaiya  as she enters our conversation on this emerging topic of
> communication, co-generlization and what she refers to as the *experiential
> or representational* aspect of semiotic mediation.
>
> RUQUIYA:  a second contradiction in Vygotsky’s theory is that his views on
> language as system posits the history of the development of linguistic
> meaning is social BUT meaning itself is representational/experiential.
> He wishes to stress the sociogenesis of higher mental functions, but the
> only meanings he finds of interest are the meanings that do NOT DIRECTLY
> relate to interpersonal relations.
>
> My turn is up, but i do recommend reading both David Kellogg’s translation
> of Vygotsky’s last lecture in con/junction with Ruqaiya’s paper. This way
> of reading each paper through the other may allow Baritones to foreground
> soprano voices within the exploration of semiotic mediation.
>
> PS Ruquia briefly mentions gesturing as a semiotic modality or means of
> co-generating meaning but my turn is up.
>
>
> Sent from my Windows 10 phone
>
> From: Rod Parker-Rees
> Sent: November 9, 2016 5:32 AM
> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity
> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Communication, Co-generalization, and Crises
>
> This raises questions for me about how we understand the word 'concept'.
>
> This can be understood as referring to things that go together but really
> things that are taken together - the 'con' seems to do double work, both
> the togetherness of the things which are taken together and the
> togetherness of the cultural agreement to take these things AS going
> together. So concepts, as we usually use the term, are co-generalizations
> or conconcepts? Things which we (together) agree to think of as going
> together.
>
> It is easy to miss the sociocultural 'agreement' aspects, as it is in
> 'understanding', which no longer resonates with a sense of joining in with
> (or standing among) others.
>
> All the best,
>
> Rod
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: xmca-l-bounces@mailman.ucsd.edu [mailto:xmca-l-bounces@
> mailman.ucsd.edu] On Behalf Of mike cole
> Sent: 09 November 2016 05:40
> To: eXtended Mind, Culture, Activity <xmca-l@mailman.ucsd.edu>
> Subject: [Xmca-l] Re: Communication, Co-generalization, and Crises
>
> These are interesting ideas, David. I will respond and ask questions in
> italics between paragraphs because the overall note seems to contain some
> sub-themes worth comment on their own.
>
> ​​
>
> On Tue, Nov 8, 2016 at 5:55 PM, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com>
> wrote:
>
> >  Huw:
> >
> >
> > I think in general we tend to overstate the differences between
> > Vygotsky's thinking in different periods, because we notice that he
> > changes his wordings and we assume that means he has changed his mind.
> > We forget that Vygotsky steals most of his words from other people
> > ("egocentric speech", "pseudoconcept", "mediation", "neoformation",
> > etc.) and then works them into his own system of concepts, and it's
> > the system of concepts that is really new, not the words.
> >
> > ​*I agree,but its hard to keep the chronology straight and a lot of
> > his
> ideas come from Western Europe/US sources*​. *The translations of terms
> across systems cannot help but be a distorted lens which use of common
> terms hides from us. Unwitting players in the pseudoconcept game.* ​
>
> > So for example Yasnitsky and Van der Veer claim that Vygotsky gave up
> > instrumentalism, abandoned the distinction between higher and lower
> > psychological functions, and tried to become a Gestaltist, and failed.
> > None of this is true, as far as I can tell. The final lectures--right
> > up to the one I sent around--have a central role for word meanings,
> > maintain that the higher psychological functions are specifically
> > human and the main expanadum, and include some pretty harsh criticisms
> > of the Gestaltists, who were by then showing distinctly Nazi tendencies.
> >
> > ​*The stages of instrumentalism, functional systems, to "perezhivanie"
> > (transactionalism?) have always seemed to me a clear case where
> > earlier stages are sublated. He was critical of Gestaltists for their
> > reductions to biology and the fascism associated with it, but the
> > problem of the whole in relations to parts and the centrality of
> > structuration seems to remain. How else could one step in instruction
> > create two steps in development?* ​
> >
>
> ​
> >
> > But it is certainly true that the words change, and some of the words
> > that have caused the most trouble--interestingly enough--disappear.
> > For example, Vygotsky stops using the word "reaction", he no longer
> > talks about "vrashevaniye" or "introvolution", and he only uses the word
> "internalize"
> > once, when he is talking about a whole system of concepts (not when he
> > is talking about reactions). So the question arises--what takes its
> place?
> >
> >
> > Here's what we put in the "Thinking at School Age" chapter that I sent
> > around. Criticisms from Russophones?
> >
> > ​*The issues raised here seem really central to understand, but I am
> > not sure I fully understood them all.*​
> >
> > Vygotsky contrasts обобщения (“generalization”) and общения
> > (“communication”, “contact”, “interaction”). But if we translate these
> > terms as “generalization” and “communication” respectively, we obscure
> > the fact that they have the same root: “commonality” or “sharing”.
> >
> > *​OK, got it, the unity of generalization and communication, in
> > russian, have the same root as "common-ness (обще​-ness)​."​ But I
> > have trouble getting from there to "meta-communication." Maybe my
> > denseness.*
>
>
>
> > ​
> > ​In Russian, об is a preposition, meaning “about” or “of”, so we might
>
> render this contrast as “about-communication” or “meta-communication” vs.
> > “communication”. But this would allow the sociological, interpersonal
> > side of Vygotsky’s meaning to eclipse the psychological, intra-personal
> side.
> >
> > ​*Why and when do we have to allow such eclipsing given the
> > theoretical formulation above? Missed that.*
> >
>
>
> > ​
> >
> > Another way to put it would be to say that “generalization” is really
> > “inter-generalization”, because it is between the child and the
> > environment, and “interaction” is really “intra-generalization”—within
> > the child.
>
>
> *​I find that very difficult to follow but the next sentence reads
> correctly to me... although I am not sure what 'the child derives" means.* ​
>
>
> > The child derives intra-mental generalizations through a process of
> > inter-personal communications, by interaction using shared word values
> > within a speech community. This “community generalization” or “common
> > generalization” or “co-generalization” for short is what is enabled by
> > word meanings shared within the speech community. These meanings the
> > child at first only partially shares.
> >
>
> *Does the community generalization- to common generalization, to
> co-generation end correspond to the extreme, externalize form of sense? So
> these are different ways of expressing the conventionality/historical
> nature of word meaning?​*
>
> ​*Seems to me that not only the child at first, but the human of any age
> for ever after only partially share the conventional/valued word meanings
> of the society that mediate everyday experience (to use some borrowed
> words!) of one's same of the species' delights.​*
>
>
> >
> >
> > This word обобщения usually translated as “generalization”. Because
> > this turns out to be a very important point in this particular lecture
> > and in the lectures that follow, we will take the liberty of
> > translating as “co-generalization”. A “co-generalization” is a
> > generalization about generalizations made by the child through
> > construing the shared generalizations of word values in a speech
> community.
> >
>
> *​This seems the biggy to pull of. What, in truth, do russianophiles have
> to say about it?*
>
> mike​
>
>
> >
> >
> > David Kellogg
> >
> > Macquarie University
> >
> > On Wed, Nov 9, 2016 at 11:15 AM, Huw Lloyd <huw.softdesigns@gmail.com>
> > wrote:
> >
> > > Where does 'co-generalization' come from, David? Perhaps a good
> > > carry
> > over
> > > from your consideration of political milieu is the factor of tension
> > > in
> > > development: tension to foster attention, a socialised 'will' if you
> > like.
> > >
> > > Best,
> > > Huw
> > >
> > > On 7 November 2016 at 21:16, David Kellogg <dkellogg60@gmail.com>
> wrote:
> > >
> > > > Well, of course, Peg is really right--or at least half right. That
> > > > is,
> > > the
> > > > American elections are not just a plebiscite on sexual assault,
> > > > and
> > using
> > > > the term "sexual predator" reduces the whole thing to the kind of
> > > > "tu quoques" argumentation which makes up the whole of the
> > > > Republican
> > > case
> > > > these days. Actually, for the first time in my memory, the
> > > > American elections are about real issues that actually touch the
> > > > lives of
> > ordinary
> > > > people, namely sexism, racism, and the impunity conferred by real
> > > > fame
> > > and
> > > > largely imaginary wealth.
> > > >
> > > > But I would like to know that the other half is also right: that
> > > > is,
> > that
> > > > xmca's normal concerns with mind, culture, and activity do not
> > > > require radio silence in times of crisis. Let me talk about
> > > > another crisis and
> > > see.
> > > > Unlike the USA, South Korea has had, since 1949, six different
> > > > constitutions. Until very recently (1997) the peaceful transfer of
> > power
> > > > was the exception and not the rule: governments changed if and
> > > > only if people took matters into their own hands, either through
> > > > mass demonstrations or violent military coups or both (the one
> > > > apparent exception was when the current president's father, Bak
> > > > Jeonghi, was
> > > forced
> > > > to call an election by the Nixon administration: on the verge of
> > > > losing
> > > to
> > > > Kim Daejeong, he peacefully overthrew himself instead).
> > > >
> > > > Now, Vygotsky also describes development in terms of six crises
> > > > (Birth, One, Three, Seven, Thirteen and Seventeen) and five more
> > > > or less stable periods of equilibrium (Infancy, Early Childhood,
> > > > Preschool, School
> > Age,
> > > > Adolescence). In fact, the Zoped (assuming that "ped" means
> > > > pedological
> > > and
> > > > not pedagogical) really refers to the functions that belong to the
> > > > NEXT zone of development and not the actual one: if a child can
> > > > simply take
> > > over
> > > > functions from the environment and make them his or her own, then
> > almost
> > > by
> > > > definition they are functions that belong to the zone of actual,
> > > > and
> > not
> > > > the zone of proximal, development. That means that for every
> > > > stable
> > > period,
> > > > the Zoped is going to be a crisis (and of course that, along with
> > > > prolepsis, accounts for the unpredictability of the Zoped which
> > > > Peg
> > > noted).
> > > >
> > > > Korean crises not when people are overexploited and ruthlessly
> > > suppressed;
> > > > that is a much better description of the stable periods in Korean
> > > history.
> > > > Crises happen just when people become superproductive and try to
> > > > self-emancipate. I think crises of development in the child also
> > > > happen
> > > the
> > > > same way: that is, during normal periods, the environment is
> > > communicating
> > > > with the child and the child is taking over co-generalizations by
> > > > restructuring them to fit the child's extant psychological system.
> > > > But Vygotsky says that there are moments when this cannot happen,
> > > > because
> > the
> > > > psychological system itself must be restructured: the central
> > > neoformation
> > > > dissolves the social situation of development.
> > > >
> > > > During normal times, the environment is the source of development
> > > > and
> > the
> > > > child's personality is only the site of development: but during
> > > > these
> > > crazy
> > > > crises (the crisis of "autonomous speech", the crisis of the
> > negativistic
> > > > "proto will", the crisis of the affected, manneristic, clownish
> > > > "proto-self"), it is almost as if the child, superproductive and
> > active,
> > > > wants to "turn the tables", transforming the personality into the
> > source
> > > of
> > > > development and adapting the environment to it instead.
> > > >
> > > > One of the most puzzling things in Vygotsky's last lectures is the
> > > Central
> > > > Line of Development. On the one hand, these are always forms of
> > > > "communication" and "co-generalization". And on the other, because
> > > each
> > > > Neoformation is entirely new, what is Central in one period is
> > Peripheral
> > > > in the next: perception, for example, is the maximally developing
> > > function
> > > > in Infancy, but memory is the leading function in Preschool.
> > > > Speech is
> > a
> > > > Central Line of Development in early childhood but Thinking in
> > > > School
> > > Age.
> > > > How can BOTH of these things be true?
> > > >
> > > > It seems to me that both of them are true.Communication represents
> > > contact
> > > > with the social environment, and this is always foregrounded
> > > > during
> > > stable
> > > > periods and backgrounded during crises. Co-generalization
> > > > represents
> > what
> > > > we use to call "internalization", and this is foregrounded during
> > crises
> > > > and backgrounded during stable periods. In addition, the content
> > > > of the communication and co-generalization changes as the child
> > > > develops, from doing things in Infancy, to saying things in Early
> > > > Childhood, to
> > feeling
> > > in
> > > > Preschool, and to thinking in School Age. When co-generalization
> > becomes
> > > > super-productive, we get conscious awareness, and  with awareness,
> > > crisis.
> > > > With crises, worlds change.
> > > >
> > > > David Kellogg
> > > > Macquarie University
> > > >
> > >
> >
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